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€300,000 to the winner and €200,000 to the runner-up!

John Bain

Ju Wenjun alone in photo smile of joy after defending 2023 Women's World Chess Champion in white blouse & dark blazer

Ju Wenjun
A smile of joy after Game 12

In Game 12–the final game of Classical Chess play–with the match tied, the reigning Champion Ju Wenjun playing the white pieces created a passed pawn and threatened to promote it to a Queen in a heavily contested double-edged game.

Game 12

Move 24. Rc3

Game 12, Move 34 Ju Wenjun played Rc1

On Move 34, Ju Wenjun played Rc1. The position was even in material count.


Lei Tingjie had a passed pawn on c4, albeit blockaded by Ju Wenjun’s white Knight on c3.

Game 12

Move 45. Ke4

Game 12, Move 45 Ju Wenjun played Ke4

By Move 45, both players had passed pawns, and Ju Wenjun was ahead a point in the material count.

Game 12

Move 62. Rb8!

Game 12, Move 62 Ju Wenjun played Rb8!

Between Move 45 and 62, Ju Wenjun coordinated her pieces, centered her King, and marshalled her d-pawn to the 7th rank threatening to promote it.

On move 62, Ju Wenjun played the crushing move, Rc1!

Lei Tingjie offered her hand in resignation and congratulations to Ju Wenjun.

The 12-game 2023 Women’s World Chess Championship match was concluded. Ju Wenjun had won her 4th Women’s World Chess Championship match.

The Challenger
Lei Tingjie

Challenger Lei Tingjie seated behind white pieces staring intently at Ju Wenjun WWCC 2023

Lei Tingjie Accepts Defeat
€200,000 Prize Money!

“For me, ok, I lost a game, I lost a match, but…I will still play chess. …I learned some spirit from my opponent–just fight for every game and fight until the end.”

Lei said her immediate plans are to “…eat some tasty food, …and take a long rest after this match because I want to spend more time with my family.”

9 Draws & 3 Decisions!

Final Score after Round 12

Final Score after Round 12

The match went all 12 Rounds! The Tiebreak format below was unnecessary. Lei Tingjie struck first, winning Round 5. Ju Wenjun struck back, winning Rounds 8 and 12.


The prize fund was €500,000, with €300,000 going to the winner Ju Wenjun and the remaining €200,000 to the runner-up Lei Tingjie.

If the outcome of the match is decided by Tiebreaks, the winner would have won €275,000, while the runner-up would have received €225,000.


If after Round 12 the Classical Chess match had ended in a tie at 6-6, then the following Tiebreaks would have been followed:

1) Four 25-minute Rapid Chess games, where the players get an extra 10 seconds each move.

2) Then, if necessary, two Blitz Chess games with a 5+3 time control.

3) Then, if necessary, two more Blitz Chess games with a 5+3 time control.

4) Finally, if necessary, One Blitz Chess game with a 3+2 time control, until a winner is determined.

China’s Ju Wenjun

Women’s World Chess Champion

Born: January 31, 1991
Shanghai, China
FIDE Rating 2564

Ju Wenjun Women's World Chess Champion in orange sweater

Ready for a Challenger!

Ju Wenjun defended her title in a 12-game match, July 5-22, 2023, against the Challenger Lei Tingjie, the winner of the Candidates Tournament.

The 2023 Women’s World Chess Championship match took place in two cities in China–Chongqing and Shanghai–giving each player a home advantage.

Lei Tingjie was born in Chongqing, and Ju Wenjun was born in Shanghai.

Lei Tingjie

The Challenger

Lei Tingjie is a Chinese Grandmaster (GM), who in addition to the 2023 Candidates Tournament also won the 2017 Women’s Chinese Chess Championship.Lei Tingjie in blue blazer hand on chin smiling big.Lei Tingjie

#4 Rated Woman in the World
Born: March 13, 1997
Fuling District, Chongqing, China
FIDE Rating 2554

Chinese Women Dominate Chess!

Hou Yifan #1 Rated Woman Chess Player in the World!

Hou Yifan

#1 Rated Woman in the World
3-Time Women’s World Chess Champion
Born: February 27, 1994
Xinghua, China
FIDE Rating 2628

As a teenager, Hou Yifan listed her interests as reading and studying–and she listed her favorite chess player as Bobby Fischer!

Although Hou Yifan is the highest-rated woman chess player in the world and 3-time Women’s World Chess Champion, Hou stepped away from the Women’s Chess Championship cycle in 2017 at 23 years old in order to focus on life. Hou chose to treat chess as a hobby, not a career.

In 2018 she said, “I want to be the best, but I also want to have a life.”

She enrolled in Peking University in 2012, studying International Relations. She took a full course load and participated in many extracurricular activities. She was offered a Rhodes Scholarship to the University of Oxford in England.

In 2020 at age 26, Hou became the youngest ever professor at Shenzhen University where she is now teaching.

Hou still plays chess from time to time, maybe a tournament here or there or whatnot, and is still the highest-rated woman chess player in the world, but has not re-entered the Women’s Chess Championship cycle.

Learn To Play Chess

Like the Chinese Women Play Chess!

Hou Yifan & Ju Wenjun & Lei Tingjie

Left to right: Hou Yifan, Ju Wenjun and Lei Tingjie.

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Solve a chess puzzle, enter the weekly drawing as often as you like, and win awesome prizes! Winners’ prizes are listed below. If you don’t win this week, try again next week! New puzzles are posted daily!


Below are the weekly prizes we send out! If you don’t win, try again the following week for your chance to win! Click on the prize to learn more about it.

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An instructional workbook designed for students learning the game of chess. Click here to learn more!
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An instructional workbook containing tactics in worksheet format used to checkmate--like Pins, Sacrifices, Removing the Guard, Attraction, Clearance, and Attacking Flight Squares!
Checkmate In Three Prize
Chess Tactics For Students
An instructional workbook containing 434 carefully selected problems presented in worksheet format.

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