Sports: 16-year-old Indian chess GM Praggnanandhaa shocks world No. 1 Carlsen

New Delhi, Feb 21 (IANS) After a disastrous Day One when he lost three successive games, 16-year-old chess Grandmaster R Praggnanandhaa shocked world No. 1 Magnus Carlsen of Norway in the eighth round of the Airthings Masters rapid online chess tournament on Monday.

The fifth-youngest person ever to achieve the title of Grandmaster, Praggnanandhaa, playing with black pieces against the 31-year-old Carlsen, won in 39 moves in a Tarrasch variation game. He thus halted Carlsen’s run of three consecutive victories.

The Indian, who won the World Youth Chess Championships U-8 title in 2013, which earned him the title of FIDE Master at the age of 7, currently has eight points and is in joint 12th spot after eight rounds.

Following the Carlsen success, Praggnanandhaa now has two wins, two draws and four losses.

On Sunday, Praggnanandhaa drew the first round with Le Quang Liem of Vietnam and lost to Canadian Eric Hensen, Chinese Ding Liren and Poland’s Jan-Krzysztof Duda.

On Monday, he drew against Dutch player Anish Giri and and lost to Shakhriyar Mamedyarov of Azerbaijan.

Russia’s Ian Nepomniachtchi is leading the standings with 19 points.

The Airthings Masters has a a 16-player online rapid format, where the winner gets three points, while a draw earns him only one in the preliminary rounds. Seven more rounds remain in the preliminary phase.

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