This Chennai Boy Is Now World's Second-Youngest Grandmaster

He is also India's youngest Grandmaster.

Chennai boy R Praggnanandhaa is just about to turn 13 in less than two months. But unlike many others of his age, this boy is a chess wizard who has achieved the highest title of the game. On June 22nd, Praggnanandhaa became world’s second youngest Grandmaster after winning his third GM norm during the Gredine Open in Italy. All of 12 years, 10 months and 13 days, the young prodigy has also set a national record. He is now India’s youngest Grandmaster as well.

To become a chess Grandmaster, every player has to fulfill two conditions. Firstly, he/she should have earned 3 Grandmaster norms in events covering a minimum number of 27 games. Along with that one has to get an Elo rating of 2500 points. Praggnanandhaa won his first GM norm at the World Junior Championships in November 2017. In April this year, he achieved his second by winning the Herkalion Fischer Memorial tournament in Greece.

Praggnanandhaa’s spectacular achievement has earned him appreciation from Vishwananthan Anand, India’s first Grandmaster. In a tweet, he congratulated the young Grandmaster and welcomed him to the ‘club’.

While Praggnanandhaa is the world’s second youngest Grandmaster, the first spot in the list is held by Sergey Karjakin who hails from Ukraine. Karjakin became the world’s youngest grandmaster in the year 2002 at the age of 12 years and 7 months. The fourth spot in the list is also held by an Indian. Parimarjan Negi, at the age of 13 years, 4 months and 22 days, became the youngest Indian to have ever become a Grandmaster in the year 2006, a record which  Praggnanandhaa just broke.