Malcolm Pein on…Brilliant Young Mind


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Abhimanyu Mishra from New Jersey has become the youngest grandmaster of all time, at the age of 12 years, 4 months, and 25 days. Mishra broke the record of Sergey Karjakin set back in 2002, when the future world championship challenger was aged 12 years and seven months.

Already the youngest ever International Master, Mishra was hampered in his quest for the GM title by the pandemic but relocated with his family to Hungary in April to play in a number of GM norm tournaments. His first norm came at the April Vezerkepzo tournament, with the second arising at the May edition of the famous First Saturday tournament in Budapest.

Talking to Chess24, Mishra revealed that he works on chess “at least 12 hours a day”, not least studying intensively on the Chessable website. He has also received some coaching from Indian number two, Pentala Harikrishna.

Mishra obtained his third and final norm with victory over the Indian GM Leon Mendonca at the Vezerkepzo GM Mix event.

He has been awarded a place at the FIDE World Cup in Sochi.

B. Souhardo – A. Mishra

Budapest 2021

French Defense

1.e4 e6 2.d4 d5 3.Nd2 c5 4.exd5 Qxd5 5.dxc5 Nf6 6.Ngf3 Qxc5 7.Bd3 Nbd7 8.O-O Be7 9.Nb3 (Just four days later, the same players met again, and White improved with 9.a4!? O-O 10.a5 Qc7 11.Nb3 Nc5 12.Nxc5 Bxc5 13.Bg5 with an edge). 9…Qc7 10.Bg5 O-O 11.Qe2 b6 12.Rfe1 Bb7 13.Bh4 Nd5 (13…Bd6!? 14.Nbd4 a6 is quite a pleasant setup for Black) 14.Bxe7?! (14.Bg3! gives White an edge, since Black’s pieces are a little loose after 14…Nf4?! 15.Qd2 Bd6 16. Be4! and 14…Bd6?! 15.Ng5! launches a strong attack) 14…Nxe7 15.Nbd4 Nf6? (15…Nd5! is fine for Black)

16.Nxe6! fxe6 17.Qxe6+ Rf7 18.Ng5 Bd5 19.Qe5? (A bad oversight. 19.Qe3 Ng6 20.Nxf7 Bxf7 21.Rad1 would have left White well centralised and clearly better) 19…Nc6! 20.Bxh7+ (There’s nothing better) 20…Nxh7 21.Qxd5 Nxg5 22.Qxg5 Raf8 23.f3 Nd4 24.Rac1 Qc4 25.b3 Qc3 26.Re4 How did Black force immediate resignation? (Highlight the area below the diagram to see the answer)

Answer: 26…Qxf3! 0-1 If 27.Ree1 Qf2+ 28.Kh1 Qf1+ and mates or 27.gxf3 Nxf3+ 28.Kg2 Nxg5.

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