Abhimanyu Mishra becomes the youngest grandmaster in chess history

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IM Abhimanyu Mishra became the youngest chess grandmaster in history today. The 12-year-old New Jersey player achieved his third GM norm in Budapest after exceeding the required 2500 Elo rating limit.

Mishra (often called “Abhi”) broke GM Sergey Karjakin’s 19 year old record. On August 12, 2002, Karjakin, the 2016 World Cup challenger, secured the grandmaster title at the age of 12 years and seven months. Mishra, born on February 5, 2009, took 12 years, four months and 25 days to achieve the highest chess title.

For 19 years, Sergey Karjakin was the youngest grandmaster in history. Photo: Maria Emelianova / Chess.com.

Karjakin told Chess.com:

Somehow I’m pretty philosophical because I felt like it was almost 20 years ago and it really is too much! It had to be broken. Sooner or later I was sure it was going to happen. I was absolutely certain that one of the Indians would do that much sooner. Somehow I was very lucky that it didn’t happen.

Yes, I’m a little sad that I lost the record, I don’t want to lie, but at the same time I can only congratulate him and it’s not a problem. I hope that he will become one of the best chess players and that it will just be a nice start to his great career. I wish him all the best.

I hope that he will become one of the best chess players and that it will just be a nice start to his great career. I wish him all the best.
—Sergey Karjakin

Mishra spent several months in Budapest, Hungary, playing back-to-back tournaments and chasing the title and record. There he scored both his first and second GM norms at the Vezerkepzo tournament in April and at the First Saturday tournament in May 2021, both round robins of 10 players set up specifically for the scoring norms.

He couldn’t immediately follow his next three tournaments in the Hungarian capital, which basically started every two weeks: the May and June Vezerkepzo and the June First Saturday Round Robins, which took place in the same arcade.

However, he was successful on his last attempt that month. Since several chess players stayed in Budapest for this long time, the organizers launched one last event, this time a Swiss group called Vezerkepzo GM Mix. After being invited to the FIDE World Cup in Sochi, Mishra knew this would be his last chance before leaving Hungary.

Mishra trains chess, youngest grandmaster Kasparov
Mishra was part of a group that was trained by the 13th world chess champion Garry Kasparov in the summer of 2019. Left to right: Andrew Hong, Rochelle Wu, Michael Khodarkovsky, Garry Kasparov, Brandon Jacobson, Abhi Mishra, Christopher Yoo. Photo: Adithya Chandra / Saint Louis Chess Club.

He was well on his way to his third GM norm after starting 5/6, but then Mishra lost to Slovak GM Milan Pacher on lap seven. Then he recovered with a win against Hungarian FM Bence Leszko.

Today Mishra won the biggest game of his short but fine career so far. He defeated 15-year-old Indian GM Leon Luke Mendonca with the black stones and secured a performance of over 2600 in nine rounds, which is a GM norm:

Vezerkepzo GM Mix 2021 | Round 9 (of 10) tables

Rk. SNr LINED Surname Rtg Pt. TB1 TB2 TB3 TB4 rtg +/-
1 3rd I AM Mishra Abhimanyu 2485 7.0 35.5 36.5 2619 34.00 14.8
2 10 Souhardo Basak 2382 6.5 35.5 35.0 2602 32.50 53.0
3rd 2 GM Nagy Gabor 2529 5.5 35.5 27.0 2498 28.25 -3.5
4th 6th GM Pacher Milan 2406 5.5 35.0 28.0 2494 25.50 11.0
5 5 CM Shahil Dey 2434 5.5 33.5 27.5 2470 23.75 4.7
6th 1 GM Mendonca Leon Lukas 2549 5.0 35.0 24.0 2420 21.25 -13.6
7th 12th FM Juhasz Agoston 2362 5.0 31.5 23.0 2376 18.50 3.8
8th 11 GM Czebe Attila 2379 4.5 32.5 22.5 2400 20.75 2.6
9 14th FM Leszko Bence 2311 4.5 31.0 21.5 2370 17.25 13.8
10 7th FM Murphy Conor E. 2394 4.5 29.0 21.0 2295 15.00 -11.0
11 8th GM Ilincic Zlatko 2383 4.5 28.5 21.0 2297 16.50 -9.8
12th 13th FM Manish Anto Cristiano F. 2349 4.0 32.0 20.5 2300 17.75 -10.2
13th 9 FM Egresi Mate 2383 4.0 31.5 23.0 2315 13.50 -15.4
14th 16 WFM Gaal Zsoka 2233 3.5 31.0 22.0 2279 14.00 18.4
fifteen 4th GM Varga Zoltan 2436 3.5 27.0 20.0 2229 13.00 -23.8
16 17th CM Royal Shreyas 2121 3.5 27.0 13.5 2232 10.50 45.2
17th 18th Reviczki Roland 2104 2.5 29.0 12.5 2191 7.50 25.2
18th fifteen FM Lyell Mark 2233 2.0 28.0 6.5 2088 7.50 -32.2

One of the first times Mishra’s name came up on the internet was when he was won the U-eight section the 2016 ChessKid Online National Invitational Championship (CONIC). In November 2019, Chess.com reported that Mishra became the International Master at the age of 10 years, nine months and three days. That was a record too, but today’s record is the one that really resonates.

Mishra’s coach, GM Arun Prasad, told Chess.com: “I congratulate Abhi on this great achievement. He fully deserves this achievement as I’ve seen all of his hard work firsthand. His father deserves applause for everyone too. ” of the sacrifices he made for Abhi to reach this milestone. In person, this is a great moment to see my student become a GM! “

I congratulate Abhi on this great achievement.
– GM Arun Prasad, Mishra’s trainer

Another child prodigy almost broke Karjakin’s record, but remained too short: GM Gukesh D. won the title at the age of 12 years, seven months and 17 days, 17 days later than Karjakin. Only five players in history managed to claim the title before their 13th birthday.

Below is the full top 10 youngest grandmasters of all time. This article will tell you more about the greatest chess prodigies.

Top 10 youngest chess grandmasters

No. fed player country Age
1 Abhimanyu Mishra United States 12 years, 4 months, 25 days
2 Sergey Karjakin Ukraine* 12 years, 7 months, 0 days
3rd Gukesh Dommaraju India 12 years, 7 months, 17 days
4th Javokhir Sindarov Uzbekistan 12 years, 10 months, 5 days
5 Praggnanandhaa Rameshbabu India 12 years, 10 months, 13 days
6th Nodirbek Abdusattorov Uzbekistan 13 years, 1 month, 11 days
7th Parimarjan Negi India 13 years, 4 months, 22 days
8th Magnus Carlsen Norway 13 years, 4 months, 27 days
9 Wei Yi China 13 years, 8 months, 23 days
10 Raunak Sadhwani India 13 years, 9 months, 28 days

* Karjakin was still Ukrainian when he won his title.

Mishra is definitely one of the greatest talents of his generation as he proved today. Karjakin eventually became a contender for the world title. The next few years will show whether Mishra has what it takes to become world champion one day.

One thing was confirmed again this week: chess is a game for all ages. Just yesterday, Chess.com reported that an 88-year-old chess player from Venezuela recently got his FM title.


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