Gukesh Makes History: Youngest Challenger for World Chess Championship

D Gukesh celebrating his victory at the 2024 FIDE Candidates Chess Tournament, becoming the youngest challenger for the World Chess Championship
Gukesh Makes History: Youngest Challenger for World Chess Championship

D Gukesh, a 17-year-old Indian Grandmaster from Chennai, has etched his name in chess history by winning the 2024 FIDE Candidates Chess Tournament in Toronto, Canada. His remarkable achievement surpasses the record set by Garry Kasparov in 1984, making him the youngest challenger ever for the World Chess Championship.

Gukesh's Journey to Victory

  • In the double round-robin tournament featuring eight players, Gukesh displayed exceptional skill and determination, scoring 9 out of a possible 14 points.
  • He secured the title by drawing his final round game against American Grandmaster Hikaru Nakamura, showcasing his composure under pressure.
  • The teenager had to wait for the result of the game between Fabiano Caruana (USA) and Ian Nepomniachtchi (FIDE) to confirm his outright victory.
  • Nakamura, Nepomniachtchi, and Caruana tied for second place with 8.5 points each, highlighting the fierce competition in the tournament.

Champion in the Making

  • By winning the Candidates Tournament, Gukesh has earned the right to challenge the current World Chess Champion, Ding Liren of China, in the upcoming World Chess Championship.
  • The dates and venue for the championship match are yet to be confirmed, setting the stage for a thrilling encounter between the young prodigy and the defending champion.
  • This will be Gukesh’s first appearance in a World Championship match, marking a significant milestone in his already illustrious chess career.

Gukesh's Chess Career Highlights

  • Gukesh's journey to becoming the youngest challenger for the World Chess Championship is marked by several remarkable achievements, including:
  • Becoming the third-youngest player in history to earn the Grandmaster title at the age of 12, showcasing his exceptional talent and dedication to the game.
  • Winning a silver medal at the 2023 Hangzhou Asian Games, further solidifying his reputation as a rising star in the world of chess.
  • Consistently demonstrating remarkable progress and establishing himself as a top contender in the world of chess, setting the stage for a promising future in the game.

Other Indian Performances

  • R Praggnanandhaa, another young Indian Grandmaster, finished fifth in the Candidates Tournament with 7 points, highlighting the depth of talent in Indian chess.
  • In the Women’s Candidates Tournament, Indian players Koneru Humpy and R Vaishali tied for second place with 7.5 points each, along with Lei Tingjie of China, showcasing the strong presence of Indian women in international chess.

About the World Chess Championship

  • The World Chess Championship is an annual competition organized by the World Chess Federation (FIDE) to determine the world champion in chess.
  • The first official world championship was held in 1886, with notable champions including Wilhelm Steinitz, Jose Raul Capablanca, Bobby Fischer, Garry Kasparov, Viswanathan Anand, and Magnus Carlsen.
  • The current format of the championship involves the Candidates Tournament winner challenging the reigning champion in a 12-game match, with Gukesh set to challenge Ding Liren in the upcoming championship match.

Gukesh’s historic victory in the Candidates Tournament marks a significant milestone for Indian chess and showcases the immense potential of the country’s young chess prodigies.

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