2016 Saint Louis Invitational - GM Norm Field

Ruifeng Li

Title: 
International Master
Rating: 
2517
Residence: 
United States of America
Age: 
14
Status: 
Accepted
Bio: 

Ruifeng Li has risen to 4th in the world under 16 rankings after he tied for first place in the Philadelphia Open held in March of 2016. He started exploring chess when he was 5 in Michigan, won a silver medal for the US Chess team in the World Youth Chess Championship under-10 section in 2011 and was three-time Arkansas State Champion. He earned his FM title in 2014 and IM title in 2015.

Ben Finegold

Title: 
Grandmaster
Rating: 
2501
Residence: 
United States of America
Age: 
46
Status: 
Accepted
Bio: 

Colloquially known as the "40 year old GM", Finegold started playing chess as a child and has played in nine US Chess Championships to date. One of the biggest personalities in chess, Finegold has been undefeated in tournament play for over a year. A popular GM in residence at the Chess Club and Scholastic Center of Saint Louis, Finegold's enthusiastic and humorous lectures are made even better by his plethora of chess stories and knowledge.

Steven Zierk

Title: 
International Master
Rating: 
2488
Residence: 
United States of America
Age: 
22
Status: 
Accepted
Bio: 

Steven Zierk is a 22 year old International Master from California. He was the 2010 World Under 18 Chess Champion. He currently has two norms and is seeking the GM title at the Saint Louis GM Invitational.

Akshat Chandra

Title: 
International Master
Rating: 
2464
Residence: 
United States of America
Age: 
16
Status: 
Accepted
Bio: 

Akshat Chandra is a 16 year old, International Master from New Jersey. He started playing chess in 2009 at the age of about 9 1/2 years. In January 2010, he received a starting rating of 1548 FIDE. In May 2015, just 6 1/2 years after beginning to play, Akshat crossed the GM rating of 2500 FIDE. His accelerated progress from such a late start is the largest and quickest rating increase in the world, all achieved on the traditional lower K-factor multiple.

Akshat is the defending U.S. Junior Closed Champion. He is also the 2015 National High School Champion, the top scholastic title, which complements his 2013 Junior High K-9 Super National title. 

Ashwin Jayaram

Title: 
Grandmaster
Rating: 
2460
Residence: 
India
Age: 
25
Status: 
Accepted
Bio: 

Ashwin Jayaram is a grandmaster from Bangalore, India. He achieved his Masters in Finance in Webster University and will be pursuing an MBA in June.

Denes Boros

Rating: 
2459
Residence: 
Hungary
Age: 
28
Status: 
Accepted
Bio: 

Denes is a chess Grandmaster from Hungary, currently living and coaching in St. Louis. At 14, he placed third in the Under 20 Hungarian Championship and has been a Grandmaster since 2009. He holds a BA in Psychology, studying at Webster University, and he looks to teach and instruct future chess players in applying psychology in their games. In today's computer-based chess world, much hinges on small psychological nuances. He believes that the very best youth players are also the most mentally tough and fit.

Aman Hambleton

Title: 
International Master
Rating: 
2442
Residence: 
Canada
Age: 
23
Status: 
Accepted
Bio: 

 

Aman is an International Master currently living in Montreal, Canada where he is a part-time coach and streamer at www.twitch.tv/chessbrah. He started playing chess at a very young age. He made his mark on the International Chess Scene in 2012 when he gained more than 250 ELO in less than a year, and achieved his International Master title in 2013. He was a member of Canada’s Olympic team in 2014 and is actively traveling to compete for the GM title.
Aman Hambleton is seeking his second GM norm.

Awonder Liang

Title: 
International Master
Rating: 
2406
Residence: 
United States of America
Age: 
13
Status: 
Accepted
Bio: 

Awonder was born on April 9, 2003 in Madison, Wisconsin. He has been playing chess since he was five years old. Awonder has won two world titles for age at the World Youth Chess Championships (WYCC, U8 Open in 2011, Brazil and U10 Open in 2013, United Arab Emirates). He is the youngest IM in the US history and currently the youngest IM in the world.  

Irene Sukandar

Title: 
International Master
Rating: 
2401
Residence: 
Indonesia
Age: 
24
Status: 
Accepted
Bio: 

Irene started playing chess at the age of 7 and became the first Women's Grandmaster in Indonesia at 16. In 2012 and 2014 she won the Asian Continental Championship where she earned here first GM norm. Currently she is studying International Relations in the graduate program at Webster University, and is a proud member of the National Collegiate Champion, SPICE chess team.

Eric Rosen

Title: 
International Master
Rating: 
2392
Residence: 
United States of America
Age: 
22
Status: 
Accepted
Bio: 

IM Eric Rosen is originally from Skokie, IL, and now lives in St. Louis, MO. Eric is a full-time student at Webster University and studies Interactive Digital Media. He is a member of the Webster SPICE team and an active chess coach for students across the country.