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  1. #1
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    Very Strong Women Players

    There is an article on BBC news today about female chess prodigies.

    http://www.bbc.com/capital/story/201...hess-prodigies

    It states that Hou Yifan and Judit Polgar are the only women to have ever been rated in the world top 100. Can someone confirm that this is correct? I always thought there had been a few others, on and off, over the years.

  2. #2
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    Quote Originally Posted by triplecheck View Post
    There is an article on BBC news today about female chess prodigies.

    http://www.bbc.com/capital/story/201...hess-prodigies

    It states that Hou Yifan and Judit Polgar are the only women to have ever been rated in the world top 100. Can someone confirm that this is correct? I always thought there had been a few others, on and off, over the years.
    IMHO it is plausible. The cut-off for the top 100 is about 2650 nowadays. I do not think any other woman has been ever so high.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Vlad View Post
    IMHO it is plausible. The cut-off for the top 100 is about 2650 nowadays. I do not think any other woman has been ever so high.
    Yes, but it used to be lower.

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    Quote Originally Posted by triplecheck View Post
    There is an article on BBC news today about female chess prodigies.

    http://www.bbc.com/capital/story/201...hess-prodigies

    It states that Hou Yifan and Judit Polgar are the only women to have ever been rated in the world top 100. Can someone confirm that this is correct? I always thought there had been a few others, on and off, over the years.
    I think this would be true. Susan Polgar possibly was close around 1990, though her peak rating was 2577 in 2005 when the cut-off was over 2600.

    The chessmetrics site, which retrospectively calculates ratings before their official existence, estimates Vera Menchik peaking at 52 in 1929. Of course there were many fewer "rated" players in those days so Top 100 wasn't quite the thing it is now.

  5. #5
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    Chiburdanidze was ranked #74 in January 1987

  6. #6
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    According to ChessMetrics also:
    Zhuzha Polgar #91 in 1992

    Gaprindashvili - Never made top 100 but was #113 in the world so quite close
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  7. #7
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    And a bit of ''history of women's chess''
    http://www.chessgames.com/perl/chessplayer?pid=84282 - games by Amelie Paulsen - she was playing against her brother who was at some point ranked #12 in the world.
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  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by MichaelBaron View Post
    According to ChessMetrics also:
    Zhuzha Polgar #91 in 1992

    Gaprindashvili - Never made top 100 but was #113 in the world so quite close
    ChessMetrics is notoriously unreliable compared to FIDE rating lists due to having access only to limited number of tournaments. 2560 was needed to reach the top 100 by 1992 and Susan Polgar only achieved that rating more than a decade later.

  9. #9
    CC Grandmaster Capablanca-Fan's Avatar
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    ChessMetrics might be better in times before there were FIDE rating lists. CM does have some drawbacks though; it sadly needs updating, and has been known to include matches with a compulsory opening such as the Rice Gambit.
    “The history of the 20th century is full of examples of countries that set out to redistribute wealth and ended up redistributing poverty.”
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    Illuminati Bill Gletsos's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ian_Rogers View Post
    Chiburdanidze was ranked #74 in January 1987
    That was the list when FIDE increased the ratings of all woman (except Susan Polgar) by 100 points.
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  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bill Gletsos View Post
    That was the list when FIDE increased the ratings of all woman (except Susan Polgar) by 100 points.
    Sure, but the raise was probably legitimate in most cases; controversy was over Susan Polgar not being raised.
    In any case, by January 1988 Chiburdanidze was up to number 43!

  12. #12
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    What about Vera Menchik??

  13. #13
    CC Grandmaster Capablanca-Fan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by machomortensen View Post
    What about Vera Menchik??
    Chessmetrics Player Profile: Vera Menchik
    Born: 1906-Feb
    Died: 1944-Jun
    Best World Rank: #52 (on the May 1929 rating list)
    Highest Rating: 2535 on the May 1929 rating list, #52 in world, age 23y3m
    Best Individual Performance: 2582 in Hastings, 1931, scoring 3.5/8 (44%) vs 2634-rated opposition
    “The history of the 20th century is full of examples of countries that set out to redistribute wealth and ended up redistributing poverty.”
    “There’s no point blaming the tragedies of socialism on the flaws or corruption of particular leaders. Any system which allows some people to exercise unbridled power over others is an open invitation to abuse, whether that system is called slavery or socialism or something else.”—Thomas Sowell

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    Quote Originally Posted by Capablanca-Fan View Post
    ChessMetrics might be better in times before there were FIDE rating lists. CM does have some drawbacks though; it sadly needs updating, and has been known to include matches with a compulsory opening such as the Rice Gambit.
    Wow! When there were no FIDE ratings then ChessMetrics was better - i.e. better than nothing. Wait, it only "might" be better than nothing.

    I don't know about CM but some projects, desperate to get as much data as they could, dubiously included "training tournaments". The Russians had some ultra-strong ones, mainly to prepare for international events, with the game scores not published. But Botvinnik might say to you: "Please play 1.e4 and 3.Nc3 against my French. I want to practice my Winawer." You were going to play the Reti, but well, it's BOTVINNIK! Or you might sacrifice a piece early and it's looking shaky but you can force a perpetual check. You don't get any "training" if you do that, so you play on. You wouldn't do that in a regular tournament.

  15. #15
    CC Grandmaster Ian Murray's Avatar
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    Hou Yifan and the Wait for Chess’s First Woman World Champion

    Even by the standards of chess prodigies, Hou Yifan stood out. It wasn’t so much the way she played the game—dynamically but not dazzlingly, with an aggressive but flexible style. It was that she was a girl. Thirteen years after she became a Grandmaster, at the age of fourteen, people still mention the two big barrettes that used to pin back her bobbed hair. “I never felt restrictions or limitations,” she told me recently, from her home in Shenzhen, China, where she is a professor at Shenzhen University’s Faculty of Physical Education. (Last year, at twenty-six, she became the youngest full professor in the university’s history.) “My parents never taught me that as a girl you should do this or that,” she said. “Teachers never shaped my views in that way.” These days, her hair falls to her shoulders, and black cat’s-eye glasses frame her face. She speaks English quickly and precisely; she spent a year at Oxford as a Rhodes Scholar, studying public policy. She is the only woman among the hundred best chess players in the world, at No. 82. The second-ranked woman, Aleksandra Goryachkina, a Russian in her early twenties, is outside the top two hundred.

    Chess is not like basketball or soccer. Men and women face one another on equal terms, and no one can tell the gender of a player from the moves on a scorecard. Still, of the seventeen hundred and thirty-two Grandmasters in the world, just thirty-eight are women. ...

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