The journey of Viswanathan Anand a.k.a “Tiger of Madras” – A short story by King Chess Academy

Born on December 11, 1969, in Madras (now Chennai) in a Hindu family he started playing chess at just 6 years of his age. His father, Krishnamurthy Viswanathan, a retired general manager of Southern Railways, had studied in Jamalpur, Bihar, and his mother, Sushila, was a housewife, chess aficionado, and an influential socialite.

Anand started learning chess from his mother and his mother was also a very good chess player. Though he learned the intricacies of chess when they were moved to the Philippines when he was of 9 years of age.

By the time he was 14, Anand had won the Indian National Sub-Junior Championship with a perfect score of nine wins in nine games in 1983. At age 15 he became the youngest Indian to earn the international master title. In 1987, Mr. Anand became the first Indian to win the World Junior Chess Championship.

The following year, he won the first of three consecutive national championships. At age 17 Anand became the first Asian to win a world chess title when he won the 1987 FIDE World Junior Championship, which is open to players who have not reached their 20th birthday by January 1 of the tournament year.

At the age of 18, Anand was awarded the prestigious Padma Shri (the fourth highest civilian award in India). Viswanathan was the first Indian sports player in history to get the Padma Vibhushan award in 2007. He also received the Rajiv Gandhi Khel Ratna Award in 1991-92(India’s highest sporting honor).

He first won the FIDE World Chess Championship in 2000 and held it till 2002, thus becoming the first Asian to do so. After that, he won the FIDE Championship in the years 2007, 2008, 2010 and 2012.

Vishwanathan is also known as “Tiger of Madras” because of his sheer domination in chess over the years. He is a bachelor of commerce which he completed from Loyola College, Chennai, India.

Anand, who first earned the nickname of the “Lightning Kid” in India, is known for quick tactical calculations, which he has displayed by winning numerous “speed chess” titles. In 1998 Anand published a collection of his games, Vishy Anand: My Best Games of Chess, which he expanded with new games in 2001.

Quick Facts

Anand has a minor planet named after him named “(4538) Vishyanand” which was discovered in 1988.

Anand has endorsed brands such as NIIT, Instaforex and has a net worth of around $3 million.

Known as “Tiger of Madras” for domination and consistency of winning games.

Got the nickname the “Lightning Kid” in India, for quick tactical calculations.

Wrote a book Vishy Anand: My Best Games of Chess

Apart from Tamil, Hindi, and English, he is also fluent in French, German, and Spanish languages.

Even at the age of 50, Anand is still ranked in the world’s top 20

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