Friday, October 16, 2009

Magnus Carlsen

Earlier this month Magnus Carlsen won a major chess tournament held in China. See the report of the final round here.

Carlsen will now be the 5th player to cross the rating of 2800. The other 4 being Kasparov, Anand, Kramnik and Topalov.

Carlsen is now being trained by no other than Gary Kasparov. But even before that it was certain that he is destined to be one of the best players.

I can claim some clairvoyance :-) as I wrote the following email in March 2008, on a mailing list shared by some friends.

The beginning of the year has 2 important chess tournaments. The Corus at Wijk An Zee in the Netherlands and Linares (Mexico-Spain). These are by invitation only, and you need to be a superstar in order to get invited.

Anand is in great form. He came in at 3rd place behind 2 new stars (Aronian and Magnus Carlsen) who shared the first prize. And he won Linares outright. He played more aggressively than his usual style, and was intent on making a statement like a World Champion should. It was joy to watch his games. His usual rivals Kramnik and Topalov were left far behind. They haven't been able to keep up with the new warriors. That's what makes Anand and Kasparov so remarkable. It's near impossible to handle that stress for such a long time when so many youngsters are constantly challenging the status quo.

And that's the real story here. It wasn't Anand whom I wanted to write about. Chess and music are probably the only 2 fields where a young genius so often makes a tremendous mark and creates a storm. So how about a Mozart of Chess ? Here we saw the coming of age for Magnus Carlsen, whom I have no problem referring to as the future numero uno.

He became the youngest grandmaster at age 13, by defeating Karpov and drawing with Kasparov in 2004. Just 4 years later, at 17 and half he won the above said prestigious Corus tournament ahead of Anand, Kramnik and Topalov. He is expected to become one of the top 5 chess players when the April ratings come out. In Linares, he mated the previous world champion Topalov. Now Topalov committed a serious blunder, but that was because the stress created by Magnus's play.

If you want to check out just one of his games, I highly recommend playing over his game against Aronian which Magnus offers a counter queen sacrifice. Anand called it "one heck of a game". You can find it here.

We may have another Magnus Carlsen in India - Negi. Negi was second in Group C of the same Corus tournament. That's how Magnus also started. But it's too early for that call. Currently it's all about Magnus.

You can read more about Magnus at his Wikipedia page.

He is good looking, young and destined to rule the chess world. He is one chess player who won't have problem finding girls to date ;-)

No comments:

Post a Comment

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...