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The other side of Chess

by Aditya Sur Roy - 26/06/2022

Love to play the game of Chess? But have you ever given a thought to what the other side of the game looks like? Find out through this pictorial representation how different this game actually is from what we can see from the outside. Just like any other sport. Chess is highly competitive and it will test your mental toughness to the limit. Day in and day out you have to learn the art of dealing with extreme mental pressure and the more you become good at it, the better player you become. No matter how well prepared are you in the game, you will also need mental training to handle tense situations. You will meet players who will tell you that the position in their game was winning but they could not convert it. The reason may be sole because the opponent handled the situation in a better way. Through these pictures, I have tried to show the various kind of emotions a player goes through while playing.  Photos by Aditya Sur Roy.

The Brutal side of the game - Chess

If you are new to the world of Chess and have started playing and enjoying the game by watching online streams of your favorite streamers, you might not be fully aware of the other side of the game. For the last few days, I have been with the participants of the MPL 58th Senior National Chess Championship-2022, which was held at the Ganges Club in Kanpur. While I was covering the event, I took the opportunity to document a few key moments from the games.

The venue of the National Senior Championships 2022. Photo by Aditya Sur Roy

As a chess enthusiast, it always intrigued me to understand, what it actually takes to be a better chess player and if there was a secret formula. If you have attended or participated in any over-the-board chess tournament, you may relate to what I am saying. As this was a National tournament, players from all over the country participated in this seven-day event.


Players with starting age of 8.5 to players above 50, participated in the event. This year's tournament is considered to be the strongest Nationals ever, with more than 50 titled players participating. There were a total of 11 rounds, four days out of the seven-day event, players had to play double rounds. The format being classical, some of the games even went for 5-5.5 hours and this was a little too much for some players to handle.

Tiredness! Sometimes it gets too much for the players in between the games! Photo by Aditya Sur Roy

Yes. The game is as brutal as being on a battlefield. One wrong move, one mistake can cost you the entire game and sometimes the entire tournament. You have to fight a constant inner battle to forget a bad game and move on. For some, they may find it difficult to come back from a major upset. The affliction, the agony is something not everyone can hide.

Even seasoned Grandmasters are not spared from these emotions. Photo by Aditya Sur Roy

IM Raahul VS in deep thought during a game at the senior nationals. Photo by Aditya Sur Roy

Here are some more pictures that explain what it takes to be at the top and though it may look different in a stream on an online game, the reality is what you can see here.

The Chess Goddess Caissa does not discriminate between the young and the old. It is equally nerve-wracking for everyone.
Photo by Aditya Sur Roy

I want to conclude by mentioning that all of this is a part of the game and as soon as you master it, the sky is the limit. Much before your opponent is on the board, you have to fight your inner self and learn how to move on from a bad game and come back stronger. This is definitely one of the key elements and qualities of a great player.

Important links:

Final Results 

AICF Official Website

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