The game of chess originated in India a little before the sixth century AD . Over the years India has seen some very promising players and legends of this game . Here are we look at the long and storied legacy of India in the game of chess.
One such player was Mir Sultan Khan. He was a renowned player who did not have any formal training . He was called one of the best natural talents that the game had seen by many greats of the game like Casablanca and Alekhine whom he has also defeated. He played before India got independence and represented the British in the Olympiad.
Then came into existence the FIDE, the international chess federation .India at that time was a growing powerhouse of chess . Manuel Aaron became the country’s first International Master.4
Then came a legend called Vishy Anand .He was India’s first Grandmaster and was called the lightning kid due to the way in which he just blitzed moves against top players across the globe , giving them a run for their money . He then became the first chess world champion from India and has won five world championships overall , decimating opponents like Vladimir Kramnik , Veselin Topolov , Boris Gelfand , Garry Kasparov on his way to the top .
The sad thing is that Anand is the only Indian among the elites. There a lot of players like Sasikiran , Adhiban , Harikrishna , Vidit to name a few who are just a tad below the elite group but are promising talents.
There are also some exciting new players from India , from the present generation who are taking the world by storm . Aravind Chithambaram who is touted to be the next Anand is leading a group of exciting new talents in the country .
He is a grandmaster and is someone to look forward to , to represent India on the big stage. One other such exciting young talent is R Praggnanandhaa , who at the age of 11 is set to become the youngest ever
Grandmaster in the history of this beautiful game . What is astonishing is that both these bright young talents come from a very modest background and yet that did not hinder them from making it big in the chess world .
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India currently has the most number of rated players in the world and this number is growing at a rapid rate . Koneru Humpy , the world’s second best female player leads the charge of the Indian women in this game. Dronavalli Harika is another player among the elites in the women’s category with many exciting new talents being unearthed everyday .
Therefore India is truly a world leader in the game of chess and one can only be optimistic about what the future holds for Indian chess.