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'Gukesh is a tough opponent to face', says world champion Ding Liren

Defying expectations, D Gukesh emerges victorious at the 2024 FIDE Candidates, paving the way for a monumental clash against world champion Ding Liren.

Gukesh is a tough opponent to face, says world champion Ding Liren

Indian grandmaster D Gukesh playing against reigning world champion Ding Liren in Freestyle Chess G.O.A.T Challenge. (Photo Credits: Chessbase India)


The Bridge Desk

Updated: 22 April 2024 12:32 PM GMT

Indiam Grandmaster Gukesh emerged as the youngest-ever winner at the 2024 FIDE Candidates, securing his spot as the challenger for the FIDE World Championship later this year. The 17-year-old chess prodigy's remarkable journey to victory culminated in a draw against Hikaru Nakamura (USA), setting a new benchmark in the world of chess.

In the upcoming FIDE World Championship, Gukesh will challenge reigning champion Ding Liren, who is currently ranked 7th in the world, while Gukesh holds the 6th position.

"He has a maturity that doesn't match his age and he has his own unique understanding of the position. Although I have the advantage in classical chess, he is a difficult opponent to face," Ding Liren remarked about Gukesh.

Such praise from a seasoned champion speaks volumes about Gukesh's exceptional talent and strategic acumen on the board.

Gukesh's victory not only marks a personal milestone but also heralds a significant achievement for Indian chess. He joins the ranks of chess luminaries like Viswanathan Anand, becoming the first Indian since Anand's triumph in 2014 to clinch the prestigious Candidates title.

With a record of five wins, eight draws, and a solitary loss, Gukesh showcased resilience and precision throughout the competition, amassing a winning tally of 9 points.

His ascent to the top is all the more remarkable considering his status as the third-youngest participant ever to grace the tournament stage, following in the footsteps of legends like Bobby Fischer and Magnus Carlsen.

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