Nobody ever won a chess game by resigning.” – Savielly Tartakower
Rameshbabu Praggnanandhaa is a 14-year-old from Chennai, who is checkmating not just kings on the board, but history itself. At the age of 12, he has secured the title of the second youngest Grandmaster in the world.
Praggnanandhaa began at an early age, influenced by his sister, Vaishali. Both the brother-sister duo are now internationally acclaimed chess champions. He is one of the most talented child prodigies emerging in the field of chess. At the age of 5, he started playing at tournaments and soon went on his way to become the U-8 champion. Praggnanandhaa is on a forward-moving journey; he was also hailed as the U-10 champion.
Little Grandmaster: Rameshbabu Praggnanandhaa
In his long list of impressive achievements, this was just the beginning. At just the age of 10, he became the Youngest International Master (IM) in entire human history. Not only this, but he also persevered and reached the zenith by claiming the title of the Grandmaster. World-renowned chess player, Vishwanathan Anand even tweeted about his extraordinary skill.
R Praggnanandhaa: 'Praggnanandhaa' enthralls fans with blindfold chess | Chess News – Times of India https://t.co/iZdUybTTyX
— Viswanathan Anand (@vishy64theking) July 2, 2018
Since both the children in the family were rising stars in the world of chess, initially, it was difficult to maintain two chess careers owing to financial strain in meeting the various expenses of travel, stay and accommodations, coaching, and others. But with the support of the community and, most importantly, Praggnanandhaa’s s passion and desire to play the game, things fell into place.
Some have also observed that Praggnanandhaa often comes off as a silent, sweet, and reserved kid. But only those who haven’t seen him in action can believe that he is anything but a fierce and ruthless competitor on the chess boards.
Global Child Prodigy Awardee
Global Child Prodigy Awards, the world’s first and only award ceremony solely dedicated to recognizing unique and talented children, awarded R Praggnanandhaa under the category of sports, in the year 2020. Moreover, he was listed under the Top 100 Prodigies List of 2020!
Dominating The Chess Board
He went on to participate in the U-18 championship held in India for the first time and won a gold. Earlier this year, in January, Praggnanandhaa pulled off a massive win by beating former world champion Veselin Topalov in the sixth round of the 18th Gibraltar chess festival to record his fifth straight win there. Sportstar, a popular magazine by The Hindu, featured his success in their issues as well.
For Praggnanandhaa enjoying the true essence of the game is also essential. Not just focussing on the secondary aspect of winning and losing, he also says, “I enjoyed myself, I played for fun.”
If you know of someone close to you who deserves to be on the Top 100 Child Prodigies list, make sure to click here.