Chess World Cup 2023: Viswanathan Anand backs R Praggnanandhaa for future success - he is a huge talent
Viswanathan Anand has backed Rameshbabu Praggnanandhaa for a bright future after his dominating draw in the first game of the Chess World Cup on Tuesday, August 22. Praggnanandhaa, 18, despite being the dominating star with the white pieces, had to be content with a draw against Norway’s Magnus Carlsen after 35 moves. They will meet again on Wednesday in game two of the Chess World Cup.
Anand full of praise for Praggnanandhaa
"He is a huge talent. At such a young age, he has shown that he has what it takes to go all the way. He has all the qualities you need, tenacity and, ability to keep playing under pressure. He has huge competitive skills as well. He is not only about knowledge, he competes at a very high level as well. People are so excited about him,” Anand said in a conversation with India Today.
After starting with white pieces, 18-year-old Praggnanandhaa established an early dominance as he had an advantage of 20 minutes over veteran Carlsen during the ninth move of the contest.
Praggnanandhaa’s offensive push forced Carlsen to take his time before he stormed back into the contest. It took over 15 minutes for the Norwegian Grandmaster to push for the 13th move in the game. It took him 27 minutes to think and deliver the 13th move to stop Praggnanandhaa from gaining any advantage.
"It's a great moment for Indian chess. It's a great moment for Pragg. Just to give you an idea, I have won two World Cups. Pragg will be the first Indian to play in a World Cup final after I played. But by strange coincidence, that's the one gap in Carlsen's tournament record. He has never won a World Cup. He reached the World Cup final for the first time. They are both playing for a win for the first time, which is curious," Anand added.
The duo will meet again on Wednesday in the second game with Carlsen set to start with white pieces.