Indian chess grandmaster and 2023 FIDE World Cup runner-up R Praggnanandhaa on Wednesday received a grand welcome at the Chennai Airport. Upon his arrival in the city, Praggnanandhaa said, “I am very happy to see so many people coming here and it is good for Chess".
The Indian Chess prodigy won a silver medal in the Fide World Cup 2023 and qualified for the Candidates 2024 recently. World No. 1 Magnus Carlsen defeated India's grandmaster R Praggnanandhaa to clinch the title of the International Chess Federation World Cup.
Praggnanandhaa had to settle for the position of runner-up of the 2023 FIDE World Cup but he will draw hope from the fact that he has qualified for the FIDE Candidates tournament.
The 2024 Candidates Tournament will be an eight-player chess tournament scheduled to be held from April 2 to April 25, 2024 in Toronto, Canada.
The winner of the tournament will become the challenger for the 2024 World Chess Championship match.
Praggnanandhaa had an excellent tournament where he defeated World No. 2 Hikaru Nakamura in a tie-breaker while reaching the final defeating World No. 3 Fabiano Caruana.
For a long time, Viswanathan Anand was the lone flag-bearer of Indian chess, taking the world by storm with his exploits.
Things have changed in the last decade or so, with numerous talented players emerging on the Indian chess scene, making the country a formidable force in the world.
With the country producing Grandmasters almost on demand, Anand went so far as to say that the current lot happens to be the golden generation in Indian chess.
Four Indian players -- R Praggnanandhaa, Arjun Erigaisi, D Gukesh and Vidit Santosh Gujrathi -- reached the quarterfinal of the FIDE World Cup at Baku this year.
Praggnanandhaa shone through bright, reaching the final of the World Cup, the first Indian after Anand to do so and also secured a place in the Candidates Tournament next year to determine the challenger to current world champion Ding Liren.
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