NINGBO, China (RFE/RL) — Armenia won the 2011 World Chess Team Championship in China on Tuesday, July 26, solidifying its internationally-recognized status as a chess powerhouse.
The championship, held in the Chinese city of Ningbo, was contested by the national teams of the world’s 10 leading chess nations, including Russia, Ukraine, India and Azerbaijan.
The Armenian team led by Levon Aronian, the world’s third-highest-ranked chess player, dominated throughout the 12-day tournament, winning five games and drawing the four others. It sealed the title with a draw against Ukraine in the final round of the competition.
The team mostly consisted of players who won two consecutive world Chess Olympiads in 2006 and 2008. Those victories earned them domestic stardom comparable to the popularity of the world’s leading athletes.