mind-blowing facts about Viswanathan Anand

Viswanathan Anand has been tagged as “One Man Chess Industry” for India. This five-time world champion is single-handedly responsible for setting off the name of his country in the field of Chess.Born in a small town of Mayiladuthurai, Tamil Nadu, this Chess Grand Master was the baby of his family, being 11 years younger than his sister and 13 years younger than his brother. Since, the times he was a child, he played chess at a super fast speed, which gave him the nickname of “Lightning Kid”. Other than playing chess, Anand loves reading and listening to music and considers physical fitness as essential as mental.

1. For his fans, he might be the greatest chess player in the world, but he rates the late Bobby Fischer as the best of all time.

2. Every time he loses a game, h actually works out super hard at the gym so that his mind can sleep at peace, without worrying about the loss. According to Anand, it is impossible to stay unaffected by failures. He believes that when failures stop affecting you, you stop being a sportsperson.

3. His mother taught him the game of chess when he was just six years old. His close family friend, Deepa Ramakrishnan also played an important part in teaching him the tactics of Chess at the young age.

4. At the age of 15, Anand became the youngest Indian to win the title of International Master. In chess, International Master is the level players normally attain before they become Grandmasters.

5. In his Initial years, Anand used to play the entire classical game of chess in merely 15-25 minutes while his contemporaries would take 2-3 hours.

6. The title of Grandmaster was awarded to Anand (a.k.a Vishy) after he won the Shakti Finance International chess tournament in 1988 at Coimbatore. He became India’s first ever Grandmaster. Since then, there have been several Indian chess players who have gone on to achieve the title of grandmasters.

7. He is a language enthusiast and knows three foreign languages; French, German and Spanish apart from Tamil and English

8. He has won the World Chess Championship five times and was World No.1 from 2007 to 2013.FIDE President Kirsan Ilyumzhinov presents the World chess champion Viswanathan Anand. Anand defeated Israeli challenger Boris Gelfand in a rapid tiebreaker round of the World Championship,2012 in Moscow.

9. Anand loves Moscow, the spiritual home of chess.At this historical chess city, two thousand Muscovites once gave Anand a standing ovation for his splendid move against Vladislav Tkachiev.

10. He was the only sportsperson who invited at the dinner party hosted by the Indian PM Manmohan Singh for US President Barack Obama.

11. His book ‘My Best Games of Chess’ got the British Chess Federation ‘Book of the Year’ Award in 1998. 

12. In 2007, he was honoured with the Padma Vibhushan, India’s second highest civilian award. Apart from this, Anand was also awarded the prestigious Padma Shri in 1987 when he was just 18! That year, former Indian cricket captain, Mohammed Azharuddin was the only other sports person to have been given this honor. Make sure you share this inspiring story with your friends and family!

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