Goa GM 2018 Round 2+3: 6-year-old prodigy and a 12-year-old veteran!
Age is quite a relative concept! When a 12-year-old beats a GM you have be in awe of the achievement. But when on the same day you meet a 6-year-old who shows his skills on the board, the 12-year-old suddenly starts looking like a veteran. On the second day of the Goa GM International 2018, we met two young personalities who made it a day to remember! 6-year-old Nivaan Kandhadia and 12-year-old Pranav Venkatesh. In this article we speak about the achievements as well as the playing level of these two youngsters and at the same time we also treat you to some excellent pictures by Amruta Mokal and Niklesh Jain!
The six-year-old prodigy!
What is the right age to start playing chess, people ask. I used to say when your child is around six years old! I know that there are some prodigies who do it when they are five or even four. But what I saw today was pretty mind boggling. Meet Nivaan Kandhadhia - 6-year-old boy from Pune who was playing his 25th straight game at the Goa international 2018 after playing 20 rounds in Gujarat!
The thing which struck me about Nivaan is that he is not just a prodigy, but he is a chess lover. He is given a good dose of chess history (how else would you know the names of all the world champions!) and I am sure he will be shown a lot of classics in the time to come. This will ensure that the boy loves the game of chess. It has been observed that the kids who build their foundation on the basis on games of players like Capablanca, Alekhine and these greats stay in love with the game for much longer than those who are just given tactics and positional problems to solve.
Nivaan hails from Pune and studies in grade one. A few months ago ChessBase India covered this prodigy with an article published on our newspage. We wish Nivaan, his parents, and his coach Vishwanath Shandilya, the best in their future chess journey. A long road ahead awaits them, but as long as you enjoy the journey, who cares about the destination!
The 12-year-old veteran!
I call Pranav the 12-year-old veteran, because he has beaten many strong players now. The youngster from Chennai just turned 12 years old a couple of days ago. But it was already two years ago that he had beaten GM Salem Saleh - a 2650+ GM! Pranav and his parents have completely dedicated themselves to the game of chess travelling from one tournament to the other! So much is their focus on the game that Pranav hardly goes to school. The Velammal Institution supports him to be best of their ability. The boy spends almost all of his time try to get better at the game. At the Gujarat International 2018 he missed his IM norm by half a point. "I was clearly winning my game against Arjun Kalyan in Gujarat", says Pranav. "That game ended in a draw and I missed my IM norm by half a point. So in this tournament I have decided to be more focused!" Wise words indeed from the 12-year-old youngster!
Rank after round 3 (all players on 3.0/3)
|11||GM||Deepan Chakkravarthy J.||IND||2540||ICF||3,0||0,0||4,0||6,0||6,00||3||10||3,3|
|11||114||Venkata Ramana J||IND||2086||TEL||3,0||0,0||4,0||4,5||4,50||3||20||36,6|
|31||IM||Rakesh Kumar Jena||IND||2388||ODI||3,0||0,0||3,5||5,0||5,00||3||10||3,4|
In the B-group with three games being played each day, we have two leaders Vijay Kumar and Shubham who are on 100% score with 6.0/6. They are followed by four players on 5.5/6. With three more rounds to be played on 15th of October and the last round on 16th, this promises to be an exciting event!
|45||Karthik Gopal G||IND||1810||AP||5,0||0,0||23,0||26,0||20,00||5||20||31,0|
|13||63||Anwar N K||IND||1764||KER||5,0||0,0||20,0||23,0||19,00||5||20||17,8|
|17||2||Lakshmi Krishna Bhushan D||IND||1982||AP||5,0||0,0||19,5||20,5||16,25||4||20||-4,2|
|20||84||Shyam Sundar T.||IND||1714||TN||5,0||0,0||19,0||20,0||15,75||4||20||27,6|
Photo gallery by Amruta Mokal and Niklesh Jain