Although the origin of chess is a matter of debate, many experts believe that it is based on the theory of an Indian war game called ‘Chaturanga’.

International Chess Day is celebrated worldwide on 20th July every year. Image courtesy: Grand Chase Tour/Reuters Official Website

The idea was initiated by the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) to recognize highly skilled board games. Although the origin of the game is a matter of debate, many experts believe it is based on the theory of an Indian war game called ‘Chaturanga’.

This theory is considered to be the most relevant because chess has two key features – different pieces follow different tasks and victory is based solely on the king. Later, a form of the game ‘chess’ spread widely to Europe, the Byzantine Empire and the Arabian Empire via Persia. After that, it was established by the British who introduced the black and white square and gained worldwide popularity. In 1966, the General Assembly decided to celebrate a special day for the establishment of the International Chess Federation (FIDE).

Today, on World Chess Day, let’s take a look at the Top 10 World Chess Champions:

Magnus Carlsen

Norwegian born chess player Magnus Carlsen is now number one with 2864 points. He reached the top spot in 2004 after a draw with Garry Kasparov and beating GM Anatoly Karpov at the age of 13 in 2004, before reaching 30. In 2009, Karlsson became the youngest player to break the 2800-rating threshold which has since been broken. Alireza Ferozha in 2021.

Ding Liren

Ding Liren is a Chinese Super Grandmaster who won the first Chinese chess tournament at the age of 16. He won three Chinese titles at the Chess Olympiad, including two team gold medals and one individual gold medal. Liren also recorded a team gold medal at the World Team Championships.

of Ian Nepomnia

A look at the Top 10 World Chess Champions on International Chess Day 2022

File photo by Ian Nepomniacchi (R). Image courtesy: David Lada

The Russian Super Grandmaster is currently ranked third in the world. He has positives against both legendary Grandmasters Vladimir Kramnik and Viswanathan Anand. He won the 2020–21 Candidates Tournament and challenged Carlson for the 2021 world title.

Alireza Ferozha

Firozja is an Iranian-born Grandmaster who is a two-time Iranian Champion and a European Fischer Random Champion. In 2020, he finished second, just one point behind Carlsen. In 2021, Ferozza won the Riga Grand Swiss.

Fabiano Caruana

Caruana became America’s youngest chess grandmaster, breaking GM Hikaru Nakamura’s record. In 2018, he faced Carlson at the World Chess Championship in London but lost in a tie-break playoff.

Viswanathan Anand

A look at the Top 10 World Chess Champions on International Chess Day 2022

India’s greatest chess player Viswanathan Anand. Image Courtesy: Grand Chase Tour Official Website

Viswanathan Anand is an Indian chess legend who won the FIDE World Championship consecutively in 2000 and 2001 and was the undisputed champion from 2007 to 2013. He also won a double round-robin World Championship tournament in 2007, defeating VM Mirnik of VMM.

Garry Kimovich Kasparov

Garry Kasparov is a former Russian chess player who became the youngest undisputed world chess champion in 1985 at the age of 22. He held the world No. 1 position for a record 255 months during his decorated career, from 1984 until his retirement in 2005. Career

Bobby Fischer

Bobby Fischer, an American chess grandmaster, was the 11th World Chess Champion. In 1958, he won the US Championship at the age of 14. He won the world title in 1972 but lost it in 1975.

Emmanuel Laskar

Emmanuel Lasker was the second official world champion who held the title for 27 years. In 1894, he defeated Wilhelm Steinitz, the first official world champion. He defeated many world-class competitors during his five-decade career.

Mikhail Ta

Mikhail Tal, also popularly known as the ‘Magician from Riga’, was the eighth official world champion who was crowned in 1960 at the age of 23, becoming the youngest world champion in history at the time.

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