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Indian chess prodigy R. Praggnanandhaa defeats l The Tatva

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Indian chess prodigy R. Praggnanandhaa defeats l The Tatva

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Rameshbabu Praggnanandhaa, the prodigious Indian takes on the world of chess, pushes Fabiano Caruana to the tiebreaker round, turning the game into a cakewalk and defeating Caruana in the quick game (3.5-2.5), in Baku, Azerbaijan.

Following the win, Pragg is set to take on the chess rivalry against the world champion Magnus Carlsen.

Chess fever is not a stranger thing in India and is on enormous rise but to reach the Chess World Cup finals, specially at the age of 18, is huge contribution to the Indian history. He is one of the most talented players in the rapidly growing Indian chess scene.

R. Praggnanandhaa, the chess grandmaster from Indian Southern city of Chennai, is now used to the flashing lights of chess world. He’s been the youngest international chess master at the age of 10, in 2018 became the world’s then second-youngest chess grandmaster. Along with Pragg, his three contemporaries are emerging as the most promising players of his generation: Dommaraju Gukesh, 15, who in 2019 became the second-youngest grandmaster in the annals of the game; Arjun Erigaisi, 18, who is considered one of India’s “best hopes” by five-time world champion Viswanathan Anand; and Nihal Sarin, 18, a speed chess master and the Asian blitz champion.

The Covid-19 pandemic affected Praggnanathan’s career adversely, before which he was considered to be the rising star in the Indian chess scene, but haven’t we all heard the phrase, “whatever happens, happens for the good”. Well, similar was the case for Pragg, he turned this  tragedy into an opportunity, and gained valuable experience of playing with all the top players in the world online which included victories over Carlsen in the online rapid format in February 2022 and May 2022.

“In that period he got the experience of playing with all the top players in the world. He improved his chess strength overall. But the price we paid for that was playing in a lesser number of FIDE-rated tournaments. Last year, he must have played only in 60 rated games in the standard time control (games that have an impact on ELO ratings). He wasn’t slowing down. He was just playing lesser games. This year we are focusing on standard time controls,” says his coach Ramesh who has been coaching Pragg since he was seven years old.

From chess maestros like Vishwanathan Anand to Indian politicians like Rahul Gandhi drowns the little boy with praises of joy.

“Pragg goes through to the final! He beats Fabiano Caruana in the tiebreak and will face Magnus Carlsen now. What a performance!” Vishwanathan Anand tweeted intriguingly!

India awaits the Chess World Cup final, with hopes of success for the prodigious teenager, to embark upon the India’s chess legacy.

Please, also have look : Australia names 18-player squad for the 2023 ICC ODI World Cup in India

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