Mumbai's Ananya Gupta, who clinched the bronze medal at the recent World School Chess championship held at Haldikki (Greece), credits her current coach Akash Thakur for her success.
For, it was due to a rigorous seven-hours-a-day training regime that the Nagpur-based coach implemented for nearly eight months that helped the Class IV student achieve the feat.
“World School Chess is a very prestigious event. So I had to prepare harder for it. If Akash Sir hadn’t put in the hard work, this wouldn’t have been possible,” said the Bandra resident, who wishes to be the youngest female GM.
Ranked seventh, with an ELO of 1564, in the tournament she beat higher ranked Yvonne Beline of France en route to finishing third. Ananya first laid eyes on a chessboard at the age of six by watching her dad Rishi play. Later, the DY Patil International (Worli) school student started training at the South Mumbai Chess Academy (SMCA) under Nagesh Guttula before opting to train under IM Anup Deshmukh.
Anand’s tips helped
Ananya revealed that her idol World Champion Viswanathan Anand’s advice helped her keep her cool at the World School Chess.
“I thank V Anand for my medal as it was his advice that worked wonders for me. I met him at a tournament in Pune where he spoke to me about the importance of meditation and how to keep my cool,” she said.