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High five for Aditya Mittal

Malad’s Vibgyor school champ, who is set to represent India at the World and Asian Youth c’ships, wins all five rounds in the U-5 to U-8 category of Chess Kumbh competition

Mumbai: All of seven, Aditya Mittal of Vibgyor High School (Malad) had a great start to the two-day Chess Kumbh, (an under-16 state level championship) at Kohinoor International School, Kurla on Saturday.

Participants compete in the Chess Kumbh at the Kohinoor International School, Kurla on Saturday and (inset) Aditya Mittal. Pics/Atul Kamble
Participants compete in the Chess Kumbh at the Kohinoor International School, Kurla on Saturday and (inset) Aditya Mittal. Pics/Atul Kamble 

He won all the five rounds in the Under-5 to Under-8 category. What's more, Aditya, a Class II student, will represent India at the World Youth Championships in Durban (South Africa) and in the Asian Youth Championships in Tashkent later this year.

Aditya is the reigning U-7 national champion with a FIDE rating of 1531. He aims to emulate chess icon Viswanathan Anand. "Anand sir is somebody who I want to be like when I grow up. My current aim is to become a Grand Master by 11," he said.

"The best memory of my life was playing against Anand sir during a promotional event at Gurgaon in 2011 when I had just started playing chess," added Aditya, who began playing chess at four-and-a-half.

The youngster is currently unable to walk as he met with an accident last April and had a femur fracture (an injury to the thigh bone) to his right leg. "Chess is an indoor sport so I can practice as much as I want, but I miss playing cricket," Aditya said.

Starting problems afflict tourney

There was chaos at Kohinoor International School, the venue of the Chess Kumbh on Saturday. The event which saw 600 children take part in different age groups, witnessed some participants' FIDE ratings not being taken into consideration in Round 1.

The competition scheduled to start at 9:00 am, got underway only at 10:30 am. Gangadhar Shelke, father of 11-year-old Shankarsha, who was participating in the Under-9 to 12 age group was unhappy over his son's FIDE rating of 1824 not being taken into consideration in Round 1.

Arun Khetan, CEO of organisers, Sports Education Development India Limited (SEDIL), said: "There is no chaos here. We are having an event of such magnitude for the first time. Small glitches are normal. We wanted to accommodate everybody."

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