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Lucena in Lockdown #4: IM Aditya Mittal

by Avathanshu Bhat - 16/04/2020

We return in this fourth edition of Lucena in Lockdown with IM Aditya Mittal! He talks about the different ways a chess player can cope during this period of Corona virus inflicted surroundings, and what he is doing to keep himself motivated. Aditya also talks about the Coronavirus, and how he wishes for things to return to the way they were. He also discusses all the different ways one can enjoy themselves in this trying times. Take a look at two of his best games, with his analysis and notes. And lastly, find out what it is about Aditya Mittal that inspires each one who gets to know his story.

"I get up at 7.30 a.m. and commit to 8-9 hours of chess each day"

- Interview of Aditya Mittal by Avathanshu Bhat

Chess players are rarely seen without a screen in front of them, filled with lots of analysis and annotations! | Photo: Kusum Mittal

"I am now grateful to be a chess player, because I don’t think there’s much of a difference for us! You know, you sit at home with your laptop, board, and pieces and you’re good to go. Still, I think the problem is a lack of motivation, as there’s no tournaments happening, and you don’t really know when things will go back to the way they were. To counter this, I have chalked out a routine for myself and am doing my best to keep myself motivated. I am more of a morning person, and so I get up at 7:30 and commit to chess for 8-9 hours a day. In this time, I focus on all the aspects of chess, from the basics, to tactics, to positional play and so on. The book that is helping me out with all these is Dynamic Decision Making by Boris Gelfand! My coach is GM Alexander Goloschapov from Ukraine. We’re taking classes around once every week. I had last played Aeroflot Open, and I am still analyzing those games for mistakes!

Aditya in a zoom call with his relatives; the best way to stay in touch! | Photo: Kusum Mittal

"In my free time I like to sing, listen to music and spend a lot of time with my family. Yes, I miss going for tournaments (and will go for one immediately this is over!) but I am taking opportunity of this situation and am happy to be with my family. I don’t like this situation with Coronavirus one bit, and I miss seeing things in Mumbai busy as always! However, I am learning to filter out the bad, and allow the good. One thing that I’m looking forward to doing once the lockdown ends is to go on a tournament spree! I’m itching to get back into the action, and I feel like I have had enough of this ‘break!’ I had thought over Sharjah, Dubai, Reykjavik and so on, but they were cancelled. I was really looking forward to playing those tournaments!

Did you know? Aditya can sing really well, and decided to try his hand at the audition for TVS Sa Re Ga Ma Pa, where he cleared 3 rounds! | Photo: Kusum Mittal

Check out Aditya's golden voice!

Aditya also plays cricket when he is feeling healthy enough to do so. You've got to admire his spirit and strength! |Photo: Kusum Mittal

Spreading the love for chess...with his colony friends! |Photo: Kusum Mittal

"I like watching the Harry Potter movies and so do my family, so we do that most of the time. My brother is preparing for IIT JEE though, and hence his schedule stays pretty much the same. I am also playing the ChessBase India online tournaments to keep myself occupied. I am really enjoying them and I think they are great advancements to online chess! However, given a choice, I still prefer over-the-board experience to playing online, as I think there is a different feel, and that is not the same on both."


Here are two of Aditya's best games - annotated by him - below!

Aditya has always been the most inspiring person I've met. Ever since the first tournaments where I saw him (I still remember, it was Pondicherry-U-7!), he was always willing and ready to play chess. Never did I see him lose interest in the game, no matter what came his way. Even now, you see all the things Aditya has done and you wonder, where did he get the motivation for all these feats? It may not always be easy for him, but that has never stopped him before, so why should it now? His vigor is replenished, and having all these interest and hobbies keeps him active everyday. "He was in a leg cast [during the audition], but his spirit never shook," says Kusum Mittal, Aditya's mother and emotional support along with the rest of his family. He is a marvel, because seeing someone facing hardships, and yet staying strong is a rare sight. That is why I have a great respect for Aditya; not for what everyone sees him as, but because he doesn't let that define him.

Aditya has always been a spiritual person, and he adores Ganesh; the remover of obstacles!

Aditya with his brother Vinayak and mother Kusum

Know More about Aditya:

Aditya Mittal's inspirational journey of becoming an IM at the age of 12

12-year-old Aditya Mittal analyzes three exciting games from Tata Steel Chess 2019

13-year-old Aditya Mittal analyzes an AlphaZero inspired opening trend from Candidates 2020

Equal is not a draw! Aditya Mittal grinds down Rahul Srivatshav (2460)
12-year-old Aditya Mittal scores his maiden IM norm and pumps up his rating to 2350+
Father of 12-year-old Aditya Mittal - the boy who scored 2 IM norms in 2 consecutive events
"Aditya Mittal will be a grandmaster soon!" - says the man who beat Mikhail Tal

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