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India’s R Praggnanandhaa stuns World No.1 Magnus Carlsen at Airthings Masters chess tournament

Young Indian Grandmaster R Praggnanandhaa startled world number one, Magnus Carlsen, in the eighth round of the Airthings Masters, an online fast chess competition. Early on Monday, Praggnanandhaa won a Tarrasch variant game with black pieces in 39 moves, breaking Carlsen’s three-game winning streak.

After eight rounds, the Indian GM lies in the 12th spot with eight points. His stunning triumph over Carlsen follows a mediocre performance in the earlier rounds, which comprised a single victory over Lev Aronian. He drew against Anish Giri and Quang Liem Le and lost to Eric Hansen, Ding Liren, Jan-Kryzstof Duda, and Shakhriyar Mamedyarov.

Ian Nepomniachtchi of Russia, who lost the world championship match against Carlsen of Norway a few months ago, leads the rankings with 19 points, followed by Ding Liren and Hansen (both on 15 points).

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In the early rounds of the Airthings Masters, a 16-person online quick competition, a player receives three points for a victory and one for a draw in the preliminary rounds.

Who is R Praggnanandhaa?

He is a chess prodigy and the fifth-youngest Grandmaster (GM) ever, behind Abhimanyu Mishra, Sergey Karjakin, Gukesh D, and Javokhir Sindarov. At the age of 7, Praggnanandhaa won the World Youth Chess Championships Under-8 championship, earning him the title of FIDE Master. In 2015, he won the Under-10 championship.

At the age of ten years, Praggnanandhaa became the youngest international master in history. In April 2021, Praggnanandhaa won the Polgar Challenge, the first (of four) legs of the Julius Baer Challengers Chess Tour, a fast-paced online event for young players hosted by Julius Baer Group and Chess24.com. In the Tata Steel Chess Tournament 2022, Praggnanandhaa competed in the Masters section, winning games against Andrey Esipenko, Vidit Gujrathi, and Nils Grandelius, and ending in 12th place with a final score of 5.5 points.


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