Indian Chess players, we don’t talk about much

Impeccable brains and strategies of these Indian Chess players is unmatchable

Believed to be originated in the northwest part of India in the early 7th century, Chess was then known as chaturaṅga – meaning four divisions of the military laced with infantry, cavalry, elephants, and chariots that are now better known as the pawn, knight, bishop, and rook. With time as it evolved to become a game for good brain exercise and a great competitive play, the reach of chess expanded to becoming an Olympic game. India found its first Grandmaster in 1988 with chess wizard Viswanathan Anand and the newest being G Akash.  Let’s take a look at a few of the chess geniuses from India.

Viswanathan Anand
Fondly called Tiger of Madras, Anand is India’s first Grandmaster who won the FIDE world championship five times in 2000, 2007, 2008, 2010, and 2012. As a child player, Anand was known for his rapid playing speed and  even won the FIDE World Rapid Chess Championship in 2003 and 2017 and the World Blitz Cup in 2000. Anand is also the first recipient of the Rajiv Gandhi Khel Ratna Award, India’s highest sporting honor and was also awarded India’s second-highest civilian award, the Padma Vibhushan.

From Guntur in Andhra Pradesh, Pentala became the youngest India Grandmaster in 2001 after winning the Commonwealth Champion. He won World Junior Championship in 2004 and the Asian Individual Championship in 2011. He represented India seven times at the Chess Olympiads between 2000 and 2012. In November 2016 with a FIDE rating of 2768 he broke into the top ten players in the world.

Vidit Santosh Gujrathi
In 2008 he became the first Indian to win the World Youth Chess Championship in the U-14 category, thereby gaining the title of an International Master. In 2013, he attained the title of Grandmaster at the World Junior Chess Championship (U20). Currently, Gujrathi is the third highest-rated player in India and is the fourth Indian player to have crossed the Elo rating threshold of 2700. His current World ranking is 2726.

Baskaran is number four on the list of chess players. It was after winning the Asian U-16 championship in 2007 in Tashkent that Baskaranrose to fame. In 2008 he won the Under 16 World Youth Championship and the 47th Premier National Chess Championship in 2009. By 2010, he earned the Grandmaster title. In 2018, Baskaran won the 33rd Reykjavik Open tournament in Iceland thereby becoming the second Indian to secure the title after Abhijeet Gupta in 2016.

According to The International Chess Federation or World Chess Federation, FIDE, India has 66 Grandmasters, 125 International Masters, 20 Woman Grandmasters, and 42 Women International Masters, and a total of 33,028 rated players.

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