R Praggnanandhaa I PTI
New Delhi: Grandmaster Rameshbabu Praggnanandhaa, one of the youngest bright talents in the game from the country, clinched the Paracin Open Group A chess tournament title on Saturday, after netting eight points from nine rounds.
Praggnanandhaa remained unbeaten and finished half a point ahead of Alexandr Predke, who ended up with 7.5 points. This young Grandmaster showed amazing form in the tournament, winning the first six games and drawing the seventh. He also registered victories against Indian WGM Srija Seshadri, Lachezar Yordanov (Bulgaria), Kazybek Nogerbek (Kazakhstan), compatriot Koustav Chatterjee, Arystanbek Urazayev (Kazakhstan).
This 16-year-old will be seen as a part of India's B' team in the 44th Chess Olympiad to be held in Chennai from July 28. He has left the masses awestruck with his gameplay and intelligent moves on the chess board.
Here are five facts you must know about this young rising Grandmaster of Chess:
1) Praggnanandhaa started playing Chess at the age of 5
This Chess prodigy has been playing the game since the tender age of five. He has made a lot of strides in the world of chess with the support of his family, which initially was reluctant about him taking up the game.
2) Winner of World Youth Chess Championship in Under-8 and Under-10 categories
Praggnanandhaa displayed immense potential to be a future Chess great at a very young age. He won the World Youth Chess Championship in the Under-8 category in 2013. This earned him the title of Federation Internationale des Echecs (FIDE) Master at the age of seven. He followed this with a win in the Under-10 category of the championship in 2015.
3) The youngest International Master in the history of game
The Chennai-born Praggnanandhaa is the youngest International Master in the history of Chess. International Master is the title given by Federation Internationale des Echecs (FIDE) for outstanding performances in the game. It is the rank below the Grandmaster, the highest title in Chess. To secure this title, a player must reach the established classical or standard FIDE rating of 2400 and gain three international norms in international competition.
Praggnanandhaa secured this title in 2016 as a 10-year-old, completing his third and final norm at KIIT International Open. This coupled with his 2400 ELO rating gave him the title.
4) The second youngest Grandmaster in the history of Chess in 2018
The 16-year-old is the second youngest Grandmaster in the history of Chess and also the youngest Indian to achieve the title. Grandmaster is the highest title one can obtain in the game. For earning this title, the player must achieve an established classical or standard FIDE rating of 2,500 and earn three grandmaster norms in international competition.
This prodigious talent attained the title at the age of 12 years, 10 months and 13 days in June 2018 at the 4th Gredine Open in Ortisei, Italy, the second youngest at that time to receive the title. After securing a win over Grandmaster Moroni Luca Jr in round eight, he got his GM norm with one round to spare.
Ukraine's Sergey Karjakin is the youngest ever GM in Chess - he achieved this feat in 2002 at 12 years and 7 months remains.
5) The youngest player to defeat reigning multi-time World Champion Magnus Carlsen
This young Chess talent has also caused one major upset that shook the Chess world. He is the youngest player to defeat the reigning multi-time Chess champion of the world Magnus Carlsen.
He defeated Carlsen at the eighth round of Airthings Masters in February 2022, which is an online rapid Chess competition and at the age of 16 became the youngest to defeat Carlsen since his crowning as a Champion in 2013. He also went on to defeat him in the fifth round of the Chessable Masters online rapid chess tournament three months later.