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Gukesh on threshold of Candidates history; Vishy Anand says ‘anything 17-year-old does is historic’ | Chess News



Vishwanathan Anand on D Gukesh

As he emerged from the enjoying corridor in Toronto on Sunday morning after defeating Alireza Firouzja — a victory that propped him to first place of the standings with only one sport left — D Gukesh was requested about his trademark unfazed demeanor that he has maintained all via tense rounds of the Candidates chess event. At 17 he was now only a win away from being the youngest participant ever to win the occasion performed to determine the challenger the the reigning World Champion however there have been no indicators of nerves.

To comply with our dwell weblog of the ultimate spherical of the Candidates chess event, click on right here > Candidates chess Spherical 14 dwell 


“I’ve been keen and excited in the identical method from the beginning. My psychological state has been the identical,” Gukesh stated on the press convention after the Spherical 13 triumph that made him the odds-on favorite to be the designated No.1 Candidate to tackle defending champion Ding Liren of China subsequent yr.

In one other high of the desk duel, Gukesh’s closest rivals — Ian Nepomniachtchi and Hikaru Nakamura — settled for a fast draw. These outcomes arrange an thrilling remaining spherical on Monday. Gukesh at 8.5 factors is now carefully adopted by the three joint-second candidates – the 2 People Nakamura and Fabiano Caruana together with Russia’s Nepomniachtchi.

Regardless of his opponents respiratory down his neck, Gukesh performed the ready sport. He didn’t permit strain to make him anxious. It was the French GM Firouzja who blinked first. The second got here when the 2 rival queens had been face-to-face. Gukesh didn’t shrink back from skirmish and accepted the queen trade. This put him in a profitable place. It might take him 17 extra strikes to seal the sport.

Festive offer

Removed from being overawed by the event, Gukesh has held his personal in opposition to his skilled rivals when the battle stretched. “Maybe, it could possibly be my age,” smiled Gukesh as he tried to rationalise an evidence for why he has been enjoying so nicely in longer video games in Toronto.

Gukesh’s mentor Viswanathan Anand supplied a extra lucid response. “I’d describe Gukesh on the Candidates as regular and focussed. Focussed as a result of he appreciates the event and the prospect he’s received. And regular as a result of he performs one sport at a time and gives the look of conserving his focus on the sport forward of him. He’s blissful and excited on the probability he’s received. However typically, he’s fairly level-headed about his event state of affairs. I’d say he gives the look of (being in) management,” Anand informed The Indian Categorical on Sunday.

Candidates chess 2024: Heading into the final round, Gukesh leads the 8-player standings with 8.5 points. ( Candidates chess 2024: Heading into the ultimate spherical, Gukesh leads the 8-player standings with 8.5 factors. (Michal Walusza through FIDE)

This isn’t the primary time Anand has been left impressed by Gukesh’s maturity. Again in 2022, Gukesh had been one of many standout performers of the Chess Olympiad in Chennai. However with the gold medal in sight for India, he had misplaced to Uzbekistan’s Nodirbek Abdusattorov from a profitable place which price the crew the highest spot.



Chess Candidates 2024 Stay Updates: Gukesh takes on Hikaru Nakamura with historical past on line



Again then, Anand had tried to cheer Gukesh up realising that this was the type of defeat that might impression a rising star. “I used to be positive he would really feel depressed. I’ve had video games like these the place there’s lots driving on the result and I’ve blown it. I do know what it does to you. So I assumed let me go to him and attempt to cheer him up,” Anand had informed The Indian Categorical final yr.

However, the five-time world champion quickly realised that {the teenager} was in good spirits and the 2 ended up enjoying desk tennis. Anand’s considerations had been unfounded, he didn’t must console {the teenager}.

Precisely 10 days in the past, Gukesh had skilled one other such ego bruising defeat. He had been in sight of victory in opposition to Firouzja in Spherical 7, when instantly he discovered himself sinking within the fast sand of time hassle. Within the matter of some dizzying minutes, what appeared like a sure-fire win, become demoralising defeat.

It was a type of moments the place insult got here hand in hand with damage. The setback had denied Gukesh the prospect to be the only chief on the midway level. Proper after his defeat was confirmed, Gukesh appeared shattered. He sat on the desk, face buried in his palms making an attempt to course of how he had misplaced. However he quickly gathered himself and made himself accessible for a match autopsy that gamers are mandated to do for the world. Like he has for the remainder of the event, Gukesh appeared measured as he analysed what had gone mistaken at the same time as his opponent giggled whereas recounting how unhealthy a sport he had performed, and survived with a victory.

For a teen enjoying on the greatest stage of his profession, this might have been a demoralising defeat however Gukesh has gone undefeated since that end result. “You possibly can see the frustration in Gukesh’s response and on his face (after dropping to Alireza in Spherical 7). However the sport wasn’t that overwhelming. Gukesh took it in stride and received on with the subsequent sport,” Anand informed The Indian Categorical.

Now for yet one more time, Gukesh must play the subsequent sport good. If he wins tomorrow, Gukesh will make historical past. “Nearly something a 17-year-old does on the Candidates is fairly historic,” stated Anand earlier than including: “Extra on that after the spherical tonight.”

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