Tamil Nadu’s D Gukesh became India’s youngest and the world’s second youngest Grandmaster on Tuesday after achieving his third and final GM norm at the ongoing 17th Delhi International Open Chess tournament. At 12 years, seven months and 17 days, Gukesh missed Sergey Karjakin’s record of becoming the youngest GM in the history of chess by only 17 days. However, he eclipsed the previous the record held by close friend R Praggnanandhaa in June 2018. With this feat Gukesh is now India’s 59th Grand Master.
Expressing delight over the accomplishment, Gukesh said, “I am very happy and excited to have become a Grand Master. I am delighted to have won the third (GM) norm and the title. I would like to play Anand sir sometime.”
“Before the game I didnt feel any pressure, only during the game. I just forgot about the pressure and focused on my game,” PTI quoted him as saying.
Gukesh, who idolises the legendary Bobby Fischer and India’s own Vishy Anand, said he was a little disappointed to have missed out on breaking Karjakin’s record, “I was a little disappointed not to break the record in Spain (Barcelona) but chose to focus on the way forward. I also missed out on achieving the record in Mumbai during the Mumbai International Chess tournament due to a technical issue.”
“I felt some pressure while playing in Barcelona as there was a possibility of my breaking the record. But once I missed the chance the pressure was gone. Now, I am relaxed,” he added.
“Now that I have become a GM I can play bigger touraments and will get invitations to challenging events. I want to improve my game and also achieve Super GM title,” he said.
Gukesh trains six to seven hours a day but watches Tamil comedy scenes to unwind. With a FIDE rating of 2497, the Chennai lad’s next goal is now to keep improving his game and achieve the Super GM title.