Shakhriyar Mamedyarov is currently the number one Azerbaijani chess player. Mamedyarov comes from a chess family, which boasts of woman grandmasters Turkan Mamedyarova and Zeinab Mamedyarova. He attained his best FIDE ranking of fourth in the January 2007 list. He attained his best elo rating of 2760 for the first time in the January 2008 FIDE ranking list. Queen’s Indian, Semi-Slav, Slav, Queen’s Gambit Declined, Grunfeld, Queen’s Pawn game, Ruy Lopez, Sicilian, Petrov, King’s Indian etc are his favourite openings.
Mamedyarov made his mark in the chess world with his European under-18 championship triumph. He won 10 games to finish with 10 points from possible 11 points. In 2003, Shakhriyar won the world junior chess championship. In 2005, he won the Dubai open. In 2005, he reclaimed his world junior chess championship, with the distinction of being the first player to do so. He finished that championship with an amazing elo rating of 2953.He reached the landmark of 2700 elo rating in that year. At the 2005 European Club cup, Mamedyarov finished with the second highest performance rating of 2913, behind the Vassily Ivanchuk.
In 2006, he shared the first place at Aeroflot open. Mamedyarov’s world junior chess title triumphs helped him to attain invitation to the 2006 Essent Tournament. He surprised everyone with consecutive Essent Tournament wins in 2006 and 2007. He finished first at the Mainz Germany tournament and The President’s cup in 2006. He finished as joint first at the 2006 Reykjavik Open. Later in that year, he finished as joint fifth at Tal Memorial tournament.
Mamedyarov represented Azerbaijan at chess Olympiads held in 2000, 2002, 2004 as well as 2008. He helped Azerbaijan to win bronze medal at the 2007 European Team Chess championship. At the 2007 Chess world cup, he made it to the third round where he lost to Ivan Cheparinov. At the 2008 edition, he helped Azerbaijan to improve their standings with gold medal. In 2009, he won the best individual player award for his performance during the World team chess championship.
In controversial circumstance, Mamedyarov withdrew his participation from the 2009 Aeroflot Open, after he suspected his opponent Igor Kurnosov of cheating. He took that decision, after seeing the officials giving clean chit to his opponent.