At all of 12 years, four months and 25 days, Abhimanyu Mishra has become the world’s youngest chess Grandmaster (GM). He won his third GM norm at a tournament in Budapest, the capital of the European nation of Hungary. Abhimanyu’s win has shattered a 19 year old record held by Russian Sergey Karjakin, who was 12 years and seven months old when he attained the title.
Abhimanyu lives in the United States (US) with his parents. His father introduced him to chess when Abhimanyu was just two and a half years old. By the time he was five, he was already beating much older opponents. In two years, at the age of seven, Abhimanyu was traveling for tournaments. He made history by becoming the youngest National Master in the US at the age of nine. He also became the youngest International Master (a level below GM) ever at 10 years, nine months, and three days. As can be expected from a chess prodigy (genius), Abhimanyu has an outstanding memory and remembers old games in perfect detail. He can play fast and thinks on his feet.
Surprisingly, Abhimanyu’s sports idol is not a chess player but swimmer Michael Phelps. The Indian Express newspaper reported that Abhimanyu’s other interests include karate and video games.
Some of the youngest GMs in the world like Bobby Fischer and Judith Polgar, who both became GMs at 15, have gone on to become world champions. There is possibly a similar bright future ahead for Abhimanyu.
Who’s a chess Grandmaster?
Grandmaster is a title awarded to chess players by the world chess organization FIDE. Grandmaster is the second highest title a chess player can attain (World Champ is the highest). It’s a title held by a chess player for life.