Ivan Sokolov is a well known Chess Grandmaster, who has a number of famous titles and winnings to his name. Today, he is regarded as one of the best chess players in the world owing to the fact that his numerous wins also include some major accomplishments against other legendary players.
Last Updated: July 12, 2022
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Sokolov was born on 13th of June in the year 1968, his father being a Bulgarian and mother being a Croatian, in Yugoslavia. Sokolov had been a chess enthusiast since the very time he was introduced to the game, and his sharp intuition and quick mind made people around take notice of his extraordinary talents. Soon after he began playing major tournaments and the bigger achievements began to come in when he won the FIDE Master, way back in the year 1985. This was followed by the International Master, the very next year. This famous win however soon got outshined with his next another major accomplishment when he won the Vidmar Memorial the year thereafter. It is notable that Sokolov Ivan won this title again in the year 1993.
Ivan Sokolov is a famous chess player in the Dutch-Bosnia chess sportsman born in Sarajevo, Netherlands. He started building his career in chess games at the young age of six years in 1974. Sokolov is a chess book author, a chess coach employee in the UAE, and a chess player. In chess games, he is famous for his attacking gameplay and weakness to compete for a sharing spot or tie; thus, he is best in maximizing sharp debuts like defending and counter gambits.
Ivan participated in the Yugoslav Tournament in 1988 and the Dutch Tournament in 1998. In both competitions, he emerged victorious. At the European Rapid Chess Championship, held at Hotel Zenit in Bosnia and Herzegovina in 2000, Sokolov commanded the Tournament outscoring his competitors with 6.5/7 points, thus winning the trophy and becoming the first European Rapid victor. While in the Blitz tournament held that same day, in a competition involving 52 chess players, the majority of them grandmasters (34), Sokolov again commanded the Tournament. He shared the top two prize awards with Dreev Alexy, who won the trophy due to her progressive results. It placed Dreev as the 1st European Blitz victor.
Sokolov started developing an interest in chess at the age of six years in 1974. He learned about chess from his father, who had not developed too many skills in the game (amateur player). Within no time, Sokolov registered as a chess player with the Bosnian chess club, where Ivan became an active member for about 30 years. As he gained more skills, he got the opportunity to participate in the Junior championships, where he performed exemplarily well and has been motivated to play Chess since then. In 1984, at the age of 16 years, Sokolov had already achieved a FIDE rating of 2235. By then, FIDE did not offer recognition for players below a rating of 2200. Therefore, any player without a FIDE rating was recognized as having a rating of 2200. Sokolov’s success gained more momentum, and in 1985 he was accorded the title of FIDE Master.
During that period, FIDE only accorded the FIDE Master title to players who had participated in a certain number of rated tournaments with a rating of over 2300, a requirement Sokolov achieved quite well. Things moved pretty fast for him. In 1986, he was accorded the International Master title; a year later, at the age of 19 years, he was accorded the Grandmaster title, making him the youngest Grandmaster globally by that time. He ranks fifth in chess history as the youngest GM, behind notable players like Kasparov, Tal, Spassky, and Fischer. In 1987, he competed at the Vidmar Memorial and emerged victorious, a competition he again won in 1993. He triumphed in the 2000 European Rapid chess tournament in a tie break defeating Dreeev Alexey and Azmaiparashvili Zurab.
Sokolov has had major achievements in life, particularly as a chess player. To begin with, in 2003, at Sarajevo, Bosnia, he clinched the Super Championship. He was a gold medalist together with the other Dutch players at the 2005 European Team tournament. In 2013, in Warsaw, Sokolov further achieved individual best results, contributing to the clinching of the silver medal by the Bosnia team. At the Hastings Tournament in 1998, he emerged victorious with a 2-point gap. In addition, he became Dutch Champion between 1995 & 1998.
His most famous win however was probably the Wijk aan Zee, held in the year 1999, where he managed to win against Garry Kasparov, in fine swift moves. The last FIDE rating taken saw him being rated at number 2654. This took him to the number 83 on FIDE list. His peak rating till date has been a staggering 2706 on January 2004.