Happy Birthday IM Yang-Fan Zhou (08-ix-1994)

IM Yang-Fan Zhou, UKCC Terafinal 2013, courtesy of John Upham Photography
IM Yang-Fan Zhou, UKCC Terafinal 2013, courtesy of John Upham Photography

We send best wishes to IM Yang-Fan Zhou on his birthday.

Yang-Fan George Zhou was born on Thursday, September 8th, 1994 in Wandsworth, London. His mother’s maiden name was Yang. “Parklife” by Blur was number one in the UK Singles chart.

He attended Whitgift School, Croydon (founded by John Whitgift in 1596) and then Churchill College, The University of Cambridge where he studied Chemical Engineering (same subject as Malcolm Pein)

During his undergraduate years he worked as a punter for the Traditional Punting Company in Cambridge.

Yang-Fan works for The Hut Group and resides in Manchester.

Here is an article from the Guardian which included
“The Whitgift 13-year-old recently won the Coulsdon Premier with 8.5/9, gaining nearly 100 world rating points which will make him England’s highest ranked under-18 after Howell in the July FIDE list.”

He became a FIDE Master in 2009 and an International Master in 2011.

Yang-Fan claimed the title of UK Chess Challenge “Strat” in 2011 for winning the Terafinal outright.

IM Yang-Fan Zhou at a Wellington College Training Event in 2014, courtesy of John Upham Photography
IM Yang-Fan Zhou at a Wellington College Training Event in 2014, courtesy of John Upham Photography

He scored 9/9 in the 2011 e2e4 Brighton Masters Closed tournament, including beating the two grandmasters (Keith Arkell and Alexander Cherniaev) in the tournament.

In 2012 he won the Hong Kong International Open

His peak FIDE rating was 2486 in October 2013 at the age of 19.

FIDE Rating Profile of IM Yang-Fan Zhou
FIDE Rating Profile of IM Yang-Fan Zhou

In 2014 Yang-Fan Zhou represented Cambridge in the annual Varsity match (the 132nd) and played on top board drawing with David Zakarian.

Yang-Fan Zhou plays board one in the 2014 Varsity Match, courtesy of John Upham Photography
Yang-Fan Zhou plays board one in the 2014 Varsity Match, courtesy of John Upham Photography

With the White pieces Yang-Fan is exclusively an e4 player using the Scotch Game as his main weapon playing open Sicilians and championing 6.h3 versus the Najdorf.

As the second player he employs the Sicilian Dragon and King’s Indian Defences.

and this article from Leonard Barden

IM Yang-Fan Zhou at the Big Slick Tournament, June 2013. Courtesy of John Upham Photography
IM Yang-Fan Zhou at the Big Slick Tournament, June 2013. Courtesy of John Upham Photography

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