Veselin Topalov, 1975–, Bulgarian chess player. Topalov won the under-14 world championship in 1989 and placed second in the under-16 the following year, becoming a grandmaster in 1992 and a potential challenger for the world championship by 1996. Subsquently, however, his career stagnated. In 2005, after tying Garry Kasparov for first in a tournament, Topalov, who is noted for his strong midgame play, won the World Chess Federation (FIDE) championship later in the year. However, another claimant to the title of world chess champion, Vladimir Kramnik, did not compete in the event and subsequently (2006) defeated Topalov in a world championship reunification match. Topalov unsuccessfully challenged Viswanathan Anand for the world championship in 2010.