Thursday, June 30, 2022

Saint Louis Chess Club to Host Legends and Rising Stars of American Chess

2022 U.S. Senior, Junior, and Girls’ Junior Championships return over-the-board from July 6 – July 16, 2022

This summer, the Saint Louis Chess Club will host three national championship events showcasing the best American senior, junior and girl chess players. From July 6 – 16, 2022, Saint Louis, America’s Chess Capital, will host the top 10 juniors, girls, and seniors in the invitational 2022 U.S. Junior, U.S. Girls’ Junior, and U.S. Senior Chess Championships. The tournaments feature more than $130,000 in prizes.  

“We are excited to once again kick off this summer’s national championships by bringing together the top chess players from across the United States,” said Executive Director Tony Rich. “Over the past 13 years, we’ve been proud to host the future of chess annually with the U.S. Junior and U.S. Girls’ Junior Championships and for the fourth consecutive year we will feature the legends of chess with the U.S. Senior Championship.”

The three 10-player fields will tie together chess past and future for a celebration of the best of chess.

  • U.S. Junior Championship

The U.S. Junior Championship will feature a field of new and returning young prodigies. 2021 U.S. Junior Champion GM Hans Niemann will not be returning to reclaim his title. Headlining players include two-time U.S. Junior Champion GM Awonder Liang, GM Brandon Jacobson, GM Christopher Yoo and GM Abhimanyu Mishra, whose talent and determination put them among the brightest young minds in the game. Additionally, the wildcard player will be three-time U.S. Girls’ Junior Champion, IM Carissa Yip. Along with winning the title, players will be competing to win a piece of the more than $20,000 prize fund and an invitation to the U.S. Championship later this year. The winner of the U.S. Junior Championship will be awarded a $6,000 scholarship, jointly supported by US Chess and Dewain Barber.

  • U.S. Girls’ Junior Championship

The future of women’s chess in America is bright and will be on full display during the U.S. Girls’ Junior Championship. This tournament features a field of rising stars, while 2021 US Girls’ Junior Champion IM Annie Wang will not return to reclaim her title. Headlining players returning to compete again this year include WGM Jennifer Yu, WGM Thalia Cervantes, and WIM Alice Lee, each considered to be among the top U.S. girls and women chess players. Along with winning the title, players will be up for the chance to win a piece of the more than $10,000 prize fund and an invitation to the U.S. Women’s Championship later this year. Additionally, the winner of the U.S. Girls’ Junior Championship will be awarded a $6,000 scholarship, jointly supported by US Chess and Dewain Barber.

  • U.S. Senior Championship

For the fourth consecutive year, the U.S. Senior Championship will be held alongside the country’s other national chess championships. The 2022 field boasts legendary chess players, including six U.S. Chess Hall of Fame inductees: Grandmasters Gregory Kaidanov, the 2021 U.S. Senior Champion, Joel Benjamin, the 2020 U.S. Senior Champion, Alex Shabalov, the 2019 U.S. Senior Champion, Larry Christiansen, Igor Novikov, and wildcard Nick Di Firmian.

The expert commentary team of GM’s Yasser Seirawan, Alejandro Ramirez and Cristian Chirila will call the action live. The team will be providing game analysis daily from July 6 – July 16 online starting at 1:00 p.m. CT.

Fans can watch all the action live on and on the Saint Louis Chess Club’s YouTube and channels.

2022 U.S. Junior Championship Field
NameQualification MethodInvitational Rating*Hometown
GM Awonder Liang2021 Denker Champion2705Madison, WI
GM Brandon JacobsonRating2627Westfield NJ
GM Christopher YooRating2626Dublin, CA
GM Andrew HongRating2610Saratoga, CA
GM Abhimanyu MishraRating2607Englishtown, NJ
IM David BrodskyRating2584Cortlandt Manor, NY
IM Justin WangRating2565Katy, TX
NM Pedro Espinosa2021 US Junior Open Champion2222New York, NY
IM Balaji DaggupatiRating2525San Ramon, CA
IM Carissa YipWildcard2514Andover, MA
2022 U.S. Girls’ Junior Championship Field
NameInvitational Rating*QualificationHometown
WGM Jennifer YuRating2388Ashburn, VA
WGM Thalia CervantesRating2355Saint Louis, MO
WIM Alice LeeRating23471North Oaks, MN
FM Ruiyang Yan2021 Haring Champion2344Mountain View, CA
WIM Rochelle WuRating2319Woodland, CA
WFM Sophie Morris-SuzukiRating2250Waccabuc, NY
WFM Zoey TangRating2232Portland, OR
WIM Ellen WangRating2213Bronx, NY
WFM Gracy PrasannaRating2210Nazareth, PA
WFM Anne-Marie VeleaWildcard2201Sammamish, WA
2022 U.S. Senior Championship Field
NameInvitational Rating*QualificationHometown
GM Gregory Kaidanov**2021 US Senior Champion2600Lexington, KY
IM Igor Khmelnitsky2021 Irwin Champion2470King of Prussia, PA
GM Dmitry Gurevich2021 US Senior Open Champion2417Chicago, IL 60607
GM Vladimir AkopianRating2672Glendale, CA
GM Larry Christiansen**Rating2601Cambridge, MA
GM Igor Novikov**Rating2587Lexington, KY
GM Alex Shabalov**Rating2558Pittsburgh, PA
GM Maxim DlugyRating2549New York, NY
GM Joel Benjamin**Rating2534Waldwick, NJ
GM Nick Di Firmian**Wildcard2506Oakland, CA

* Invitational ratings are calculated and certified by US Chess.
** Denotes U.S. Chess Hall of Fame members playing in the 2022 U.S. Senior Championship at the Saint Louis Chess Club.

Saint Louis Chess Club
The Saint Louis Chess Club is a non-profit, 501(c)(3) organization that is committed to making chess an important part of our community. In addition to providing a forum for the community to play tournaments and casual games, the club also offers chess improvement classes, beginner lessons and special lectures.

Recognizing the cognitive and behavioral benefits of chess, the Saint Louis Chess Club is committed to supporting those chess programs that already exist in area schools while encouraging the development of new in-school and after-school programs. For more information, visit

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