Wang Hao was born in Harbin, Heilongjiang.
<2002-2004> Wang Hao's earliest success includes winning the Qingdao Zhongfand Cup in July 2002 at the age of 12. In late 2003, his ELO jumped a spectacular 210 ELO points from 2215 to 2425 because of excellent results in three events. The first was the Chinese Teams Championships in September 2003 where he scored 5/7, adding 58.5 ELO, the second the World Youth Championships U14 in Halkidiki in October 2003 where he scored 6/9 and added 91.5 ELO points, and the third was the Chinese Individual Championship in November 2003 when he scored 6/10, adding 60 ELO.
The experience and success in these tournaments in late 2003 provided him with the improvement and the confidence that success instilled as the springboard for his spectacular assaults in 2005 when he leapt from untitled player to Grandmaster.
<2004> In July 2004, he won the Children of Asia, a youth tournament in Jakutsk with 5/5, and played in the U16 and open Olympiads (see below) and the 2004 Chinese Championships.
<2005> Wang Hao burst onto the international chess scene in 2005 with his first major tournament win at the 7th Dubai Open. An untitled player at the time of the event, and who turned 16 during round 5, he scored 7 points out of 9 to finish ahead of 53 Grandmasters and 30 International Masters with a 2731 performance. He followed this victory up with another at the 2005 Malaysian Open, this time spreadeagling the field with a score of 10/11 and a performance rating of 2843. His performances in these events, as well as in the Aeroflot Open (2005) A2 group where he had scored 6.5/9, provided the three GM norms he needed to earn him the GM title at the age of 16 (leap frogging the FM and IM titles altogether) to make him China's 20th Grandmaster.
<2006> Wang Hao came =2nd behind Yue Wang in the double round robin Chinese Men Selective tournament that finished in January 2006, scoring 12/18, and competed in the Aeroflot Open (2006) scoring 5/9, and in the Aeroflot Open (2007) this time scoring 5.5/9.
<2007> Wang Hao started 2007 with an equal second in the Singapore Masters followed by a win in February 2007 at the GACC Tournament at the University of Malaya, 4th at the Philippine International Open at Subic Bay, won the powerful double round robin (14 round) Selective Tournament for Asian Indoors Games 2007 in May and came 2nd in the Peoples Chess Festival 2007 in Stockholm in August.
<2008> The year began for Wang Hao with his =3rd place at the Gibraltar Masters (2008), half a point behind the winners. In March 2008, he won on tiebreak from Hannes Stefansson and Wang Yue in the Reykjavik Open (2008) with 7/9 points (2721 rating performance). In July 2008, he came 5th out of 10 players at the Category 18 9th Karpov Poikovsky (2008) in Russia where he scored 5.0/9 (+2=6-1), a half point behind the joint winners, with a TPR of 2734.
<2009> In May 2009, he scored 5.5/10 (+3 -2 =5) at the Bosnia (2009) in Sarajevo with a 2725 performance, placing =2nd with Borki Predojevic (2nd on countback) and behind the winner Pavel Eljanov. In September 2009, he was runner up to Wang Yue in the Chess King tournament in Jinzhou.
<2010> In May 2010, Wang Hao came first on count back ahead of Zahar Efimenko in the 40th Bosnia International tournament in Sarajevo. He scored 5/9 to come in 6th – again half a point behind the joint leaders - at the Tal Memorial (2010) and 5.5/9 to place =3rd (4th on count back) at the Hainan Danzhou GM (2010) in June, again a half point off the lead.
<2011> 2011 started modestly for Wang Hao in his first Tata A (formerly Corus A) tournament, but his 6/13 (+3 -4 =6) and a 2728 performance rating in the Tata Steel Group A (2011) included wins over Alexander Grischuk and Ruslan Ponomariov. Wang Hao came 2nd at the the 26th Summer Universiade Individual Men in Shenzhen,China, with 6.5/9 behind an incandescent Chao Li who demolished the powerful field with 8.5/9. He won the rapid chess section of the inaugural SportAccord World Mind Games, which also featured blitz and blindfold games in addition to other board games such as Go, Draughts, Bridge and Xiangqi.*
<2012> Wang Hao's finest moment so far has come with his outright victory in the Grandmaster Tournament at the Biel Chess Festival (2012) ahead of outright second placed Magnus Carlsen, after winning his last round game against Anish Giri.
<2013> In May 2013, Wang scored 4.5/9 in the category XXI Norway Chess (2013), but shocked the field by defeating world #1 Magnus Carlsen and World Champion Viswanathan Anand in successive rounds, turning the event result into a slight rating plus for him. He was not so fortunate at Dortmund Sparkassen (2013) where he scored a modest 4/9 but pulled back to some extent at the Kings Tournament (2013) where he placed 2nd with 4.5/8 behind Fabiano Caruana.
<2014> In April 2014, Wang Hao participated in the inaugural Gashimov Memorial (Group B) (2014), the category XVII second tier of a tournament to commemorate the late Azeri grandmaster. He scored 5/9 to place =3rd in the ten player round robin event.
<2015> In April he played in the Bangkok Chess Club Open (2015), and placed 4th with 7/9, half a point behind the three co-leaders of the event. In June, he competed in the 10th Edmonton International (2015) in Canada, and placed =2nd behind Pentala Harikrishna, and alongside Vasyl Ivanchuk and Surya Shekhar Ganguly.
<Age>: In 1999, Wang came third in the U-10 Youth World Championship in Oropesa del Mar, Spain. In October 2006, he came =5th in the World Junior Championship (2006) and a year later, he placed third in the World Junior Championship (2007).
<National and Continental>: Wang has participated in all the annual Chinese Championships since 2003 except for 2011, coming =2nd in the Chinese Championship (2009), =2nd in the Chinese Championship (2010) and =3rd in Chinese Championship (2015). In September 2007 he came in second place behind Pengxiang Zhang at the Asian Individual Championship (2007) in Manila.
<World>: In October 2005 he qualified for the World Cup (2005), when he came joint first in the Beijing Zonal 3.5 tournament but lost his first-round match against Vladimir Malakhov. He made it to the second round of the World Cup (2007), before succumbing to Ruslan Ponomariov. He fared slightly better in the World Cup (2009), but was defeated in the third round by Shakhriyar Mamedyarov. He qualified for the World Cup (2011) via his rating, but withdrew at the eleventh hour for health reasons. He is qualified by virtue of his rating to play in the World Cup (2013), where he defeated Qingnan Liu in the first round but was eliminated when he lost to Russian veteran GM Aleksey Dreev in the second round. He again qualified by rating to play in the World Cup (2015) and defeated Milos Perunovic to progress to the second round where he unexpectedly lost to compatriot Shanglei Lu and was eliminated from the Cup.
<2012-2013 FIDE Grand Prix series>: Playing as the AGON nominee in the FIDE Grand Prix London (2012), Wang Hao scored 5.5/11 to place 6th and get 70 GP points on the board for his 2014 World Championship campaign. He placed =1st alongside Sergey Karjakin and Alexander Morozevich with 6.5/11 in the FIDE Grand Prix Tashkent (2012), increasing his Grand Prix tally to 210 points. His 3rd outing at the FIDE Grand Prix Beijing (2013) was disastrous, placing =9th and scoring insufficient Grand Prix points to be in a position to contest the top 2 positions needed to qualify for the Candidates Tournament 2014, which combined with his results from the World Cup 2013, have eliminated him from the 2014 World Championship cycle. His final outing at the FIDE Grand Prix Paris (2013) had no bearing on the outcome, but in the event he placed =7th with 5/11.
<Events leading up to 2020/21 Candidates Tournament>: Wang Hao had his most important victory to date at the Isle of Man Grand Swiss (2019). He tied for first with Fabiano Caruana, ahead of such superstars as world champion Magnus Carlsen, Levon Aronian, Hikaru Nakamura, and Alexander Grischuk. This result qualified Wang Hao for the next Candidates tournament, since Caruana had already qualified for it by virtue of being the challenger at the prior world championship match.
The World Championship Candidates (2020/21) featured two Chinese players for the first time, the other being Ding Liren. The tournament also proved historic in that it was interrupted at the midpoint due to the COVID pandemic, and only resumed a year later. Wang Hao had a disappointing result, finishing last with 5/14. After the tournament ended, he announced his retirement from chess. This proved to be short-lived.
<Olympiads> In August 2002, Wang Hao played on the fourth board of the gold medal winning Chinese national team in the U-16 Chess Olympiad in Kuala Lumpur, scoring 3/5. In July 2004, while still 14 years old, he won both individual and team gold with his national team in the U-16 Chess Olympiad in Calicut where his result was 8/9 on the first board, producing a rating performance of 2577. Two other members of this team also won individual gold. He was also a member of the Chinese team to the Calvia Olympiad (2004) (2nd reserve scoring 3.5/5), the Dresden Olympiad (2008) (Board 4, scoring 4.5/7) and the Khanty-Mansiysk Olympiad (2010) (Board 2, scoring 7/10 and winning individual bronze); and the Istanbul Olympiad (2012) (Board 1, scoring 6/10) in Istanbul.
<National Team Events> In January 2008, at the 15th Asian Team Chess Championship in Visakhapatnam, Wang won an individual gold medal for his performance on board three (5/6), helping the national team to also winning gold. In 2012, he played board one for China and won individual and team gold at the 17th Asian Team Championships held in Zaozhuang, China.
In July 2006, he scored 3.5/5 to be the best performing member of the victorious Chinese team that defeated Sweden in the China-Sweden Summit for the Aigo Cup and was a member of the victorious Youth team in the Youth - Experience (2006). In August 2007, he competed in the 4th Russia - China Match (2007) in which China was victorious, scoring 5.5/10. In September 2007, he was part of the victorious Chinese team in the UK vs China Match (2007). In September 2008, he competed at the 7th China - Russia (2010) in Ningbo where he scored the highest in the men's category with 3.5/5 and a performance rating of 2844 for the men's team. In September 2010, he was again a member of the victorious Chinese team defeating Russia in its annual match; Wang Hao scored 3.5/5. His performance for the Chinese team in the World Team Championship (2011) was exemplary, scoring an individual gold for board one and a team silver; his personal contribution was 6/9 with a TPR of 2854.
<National Leagues> In April 2008, Wang competed at the Russian Team Championship (2008) in Dagomys, Sochi for the team ShSM 64 (Moscow), where he achieved a score of 8.0/11 (+5=6-0) and a performance rating of 2795. In 2010 he again played with the ShSM -64 (Moscow) Team which on this occasion won the Russian Team Championship (2010) outright with 16/18 points; team members included Boris Gelfand, Sergey Karjakin, and Fabiano Caruana. He also played for ShSM-64 Moscow in the European Club Cup (2011), coming fourth on board 2, with the team placing 5th and for SOCAR on board 6 at the European Club Cup (2013), winning individual and team bronze. He again played for SOCAR Baku in the European Club Cup (2014), on this occasion winning team gold and individual bronze for board 6.
In 2010 and 2011, Wang Hao played for Hebei in the Chinese League, his team placing 7th out of 10 and 9th out of 10 respectively. In 2012, he played for Chengdu Bank Team, the team placing 12th out of 12. In 2013, he played top board for Qinhuangdao, which placed 12th out of 12. (1) In 2014 he played for Beijing, which came 5th in the Chinese League. (2) In 2015, he is again playing for Beijing, on second board.
Wang Hao was =2nd with 4.5/7 in the rapid section of the chess portion of the 2014 Mind Games held in Beijing. In the blitz section, he scored 13/30 in a powerful field, adding a handful of blitz rating points to his personal tally.
Ratings and Rankings
Wang Hao's highest rating and ranking to date were in January 2013 when his rating was 2752 and his world ranking stood at #14. In July 2013, he again reached 2752 albeit with a world ranking of #15. Since his high tide marks during 2013, Wang Hao's competitive output has gradually declined in the following couple of years, with periods of inactivity and a concomitant and gradual decline in his rating and ranking to the low 2700s.
Sources and references
(1) http://chess-results.com/tnr99752.a...; (2) http://chess-results.com/tnr130645....
Wikipedia article: Wang Hao (chess player); live rating: http://www.2700chess.com/ Images: http://www.google.com.au/images?hl=...; * http://www.worldmindgames.net/en/ne...