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  5. R Praggnanandhaa stuns World No 3 Fabiano Caruana to become youngest to qualify for Chess World Cup final

R Praggnanandhaa stuns World No 3 Fabiano Caruana to become youngest to qualify for Chess World Cup final

R Praggnanandhaa shocked World No. 3 Fabiano Caruana to win the Chess World Cup semi-final by a tie-breaker and will face the world champion Magnus Carlsen in the final.

New Delhi
Published on: August 22, 2023 6:00 IST
R Praggnandhaa
Image Source : FIDE CHESS TWITTER Young Indian chess prodigy R Praggnandhaa continued his magnificent run in the World Cup

India's chess prodigy R Praggnanandhaa continued to stun world champions as became the youngest to reach the Chess World Cup final after beating Fabiano Caruana in the semi-final. Praggnanandhaa stunned the World No. 3 via a tie-breaker as he won 3.5-2.5 and will now face the world champion Magnus Carlsen in the final.

The two-game classical series ended in a 1-1 tie before Praggnanandhaa kept his composure to outwit the American grandmaster in a heart-stopping tie-breaker. The 18-year-old prodigy is only the second Indian to qualify for the Chess World Cup final and the third youngest after the legendary Bobby Fischer and Carlsen to qualify for the Candidates tournament.

"I didn't expect to play Magnus in this tournament at all because the only way I could play him was in the final, and I didn't expect to be in the final. I will just try to give my best and see how it goes!

"It feels really good to qualify for the Candidates; I really wanted to fix this spot," an excited Praggnanandhaa said after winning the semi-final clash.

Praggnanandhaa prevailed in the first 10'+10" game after the two 25'+10" games ended in a 1-1 tie. Caruana didn't let his Indian opponent off the hook in the first game of the tie-breaker and it ended in a draw before the second game too ended in a draw forcing the semi-final clash to go to the 10'+10" games.

Former Indian chess grandmaster Vishwanathan Anand took to Twitter (X) to congratulate the young prodigy saying, "Pragg goes through to the final! He beats Fabiano Caruana in the tiebreak and will face Magnus Carlsen now. What a performance!"

The players who finish in the top three in the Chess World Cup will qualify for the Candidates event in 2024 which will determine the challenger to current world champion Liren of China.

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