The Best of 2019

by ChessBase
1/3/2020 – At the end of 2019 ChessBase readers were invited to vote for the player, the female player, the game, the combination, and the endgame of the year. A lot of readers took part in the votes and here are the results — the favourites of our readers. | Photo: Maria Emelianova

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Player of the year

The vote for "The Player of the Year" took place before Magnus Carlsen became World Champion in Rapid- and in Blitz at the end of the year, adding two more World Champion titles to his already impressive list of successes in 2019. However, Carlsen did not need these two titles to become "Player of the Year 2019" with more than 50% of all votes.

Magnus Carlsen | Photo: Lennart Ootes

The results


Female player of the year

The vote for the "Female Player of the Year" also had a clear result: 47% of the voters favoured Aleksandra Goryachkina, while Ju Wenjun, the reigning Women's World Champion got only 17% of all votes. However, the chances in the match for the Women's World Championship between Goryachkina and Ju, which begins on Sunday in Shanghai, are definitely more balanced.

Aleksandra Goryachkina | Photo: Karol Bartnik

The results


Game of the year

Much closer was the result in the vote for the "Game of the Year". 26% of all voters liked the intuitive queen sacrifice best with which the Indian Grandmaster Karthikeyan Murali had won against Alireza Firouzja at the Open Asian Championships 2019. 22% of the voters favoured Dubov's creative win against Anish Giri at the FIDE Grand Prix in Moscow 2019.

Karthikeyan Murali | Photo: Amruta Mokal

The results


Here it is again: the "Game of the Year 2019":


Combination of the year

The vote for the "Combination of the Year 2019" was less contested: 44% of all voters particularly liked how Polina Shuvalova sacrificed a rook and a queen to mate with her bishops.

Polina Shuvalova

Polina Shuvalova | Photo: Niklesh Jain

The results


And here it is again: the "Combination of the Year 2019":


Endgame of the year

According to ChessBase readers, Aleksandra Goryachkina is not only the "Female Player of the Year 2019", she also played the "Endgame of the Year 2019", against Valentina Gunina at the Women's Candidates Tournament in Kazan.


Winning twice: Aleksandra Goryachkina | Photo: Eteri Kublashvili

The results


And here it is again: the "Endgame of the Year 2019":



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Timothy Chow Timothy Chow 1/4/2020 07:46
I tried clicking on the "Engine" button after Shuvalova's 30. Bf2! It's interesting that even after many minutes, the engine does not see that 31. Rxg7 forces mate after any "normal" response by Black. Very nice combination!
lajosarpad lajosarpad 1/4/2020 12:27
Does Firouzja have nerves of steel? I had a different impression at the Blitz World Championship.
Frits Fritschy Frits Fritschy 1/4/2020 12:10
Peterdrost, Firouzja is an excellent player with nerves of steel, but in the game at hand your compliments should go to the winner, Karthikeyan.
macauley macauley 1/4/2020 09:07
@pedrito77 Unfortunately played after our poll launched but it was discussed on last week’s Weekly Show with Lawrence Trent.
ketchuplover ketchuplover 1/4/2020 03:33
not too shabby
pedrito77 pedrito77 1/4/2020 02:45
Best game of the year, or at least best combination of the year was in the game Marc Narciso Dublan vs. Vitaly Bernadskiy
Peterdrost Peterdrost 1/3/2020 09:59
Well played by Firouzja! Steel nerves!