Praggnanandhaa emerges victorious against world champion Ding Liren in 2024

Praggnanandhaa has surpassed five-time world champion Viswanathan Anand to become the highest-ranked chess player in India according to FIDE's live ratings

(Chess News) Praggnanandhaa secured a notable victory by defeating the reigning World Champion, Ding Liren, in the fourth round clash. This triumph also propelled Praggnanandhaa to the position of India’s highest-ranked chess player in FIDE’s live ratings, surpassing five-time world champion Viswanathan Anand. Praggnanandhaa’s rating stands at 2748.3, while Anand is at 2748, according to FIDE’s live ratings (published at the beginning of each month).

This win marked Praggnanandhaa as the second Indian, after Anand, to defeat a reigning world champion in classical chess. Playing with the black pieces, Praggnanandhaa established an advantageous position on the board from the outset. This victory, achieved with black pieces, was his first in four rounds at the Tata Steel chess event this year, following three draws. Interestingly, he had previously defeated Ding at the same event in 2023, on January 17, when Ding held the World No 2 position and was preparing for the Candidates tournament.

Ding, who is participating in a rare tournament at Wijk aan Zee after securing the world championship crown by defeating Ian Nepomniachtchi last year, faced a tough challenge from Praggnanandhaa. Meanwhile, Gukesh, who had become the first Indian to surpass Anand as India’s No 1 in the FIDE published ratings last year, lost his match against Anish Giri. Gukesh had secured a spot at the Candidates via the ratings route, narrowly surpassing Anish. Vidit Santosh Gujrathi, the third Indian player in the competition, played to a draw against Jorden Van Foreest.

With this significant victory, Giri now leads the standings at the Tata Steel Masters chess event, heading into the first rest day. Praggnanandhaa occupies the third position in the standings, Vidit is in seventh place, and Gukesh holds the 10th spot.

Also Read: Amateur Nishna cards bogey-free 64 to rise to fourth


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