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Born in Horlivka on 11 October 1983, Ruslan Ponomariov became the youngest grandmaster in the world in 1998. With a peak rating of 2764, achieved in July 2011, Ponomariov can pride himself on a long list of professional achievements, including individual triumphs in Dortmund, Pamplona and San Sebastián, as well as gold medals with the Ukrainian team at the 2004 and 2010 Chess Olympiads, played in Calvia and Khanty- Mansiysk respectively. Notwithstanding, perhaps Ponomariov is best known for his excellent results in knockout events, including his first place at the 2002 FIDE World Chess Championship, when he defeated compatriot Vasyl Ivanchuk in the final to become the youngest ever FIDE World Champion at 18.