From UPSC perspective, the following things are important :
Prelims level : Various titles in Sports
Mains level : NA
India’s teenage chess grandmaster Rameshbabu Praggnanandhaa has won praise for a stunning victory over world number one Magnus Carlsen in an online championship.
Why are we reading this?
Grandmaster: Behind the Title
- Grandmaster is the highest title or ranking that a chess player can achieve.
- The Grandmaster title — and other chess titles — is awarded by the International Chess Federation, FIDE (acronym for its French name Fédération Internationale des Échecs).
- It is the Lausanne-Switzerland-based governing body of the international game.
- The title is the badge of the game’s super elite, a recognition of the greatest chess talent on the planet, which has been tested and proven against a peer group of other similarly talented players.
Other (lesser) titles
Besides Grandmaster, the Qualification Commission of FIDE recognises and awards seven other titles:
- International Master (IM)
- FIDE Master (FM)
- Candidate Master (CM)
- Woman Grandmaster (WGM), Woman International Master (WIM), Woman FIDE Master (WFM), and Woman Candidate Master (WCM) and so on .
Titles are for life
- All the titles, including that of Grandmaster, are valid for life, unless a player is stripped of the title for a proven offence such as cheating.
Qualifications for Grandmaster
- The qualifications for Grandmaster were changed several times, including in 1957, 1965, and 1970.
- Currently, FIDE awards chess’s highest honour to a player who is able to achieve a FIDE Classical or Standard rating of 2,500, plus three Grandmaster norms.
- Grandmaster norms are defined by a set of complex and rigorous rules regarding tournaments, games, and players, that are set out in the FIDE Title Regulations.
- The current regulations were approved by the FIDE Council on October 27, 2021, and came into effect on January 1, 2022.
- Each norm is very difficult to attain.
- Broadly, a player must have a performance rating of 2,600 or higher in a FIDE tournament that has nine rounds.
Who holds maximum titles?
- FIDE has so far recognized fewer than 2,000 Grandmasters out of the millions who play the game around the world.
- A vast majority of Grandmasters have been male. Russia (and the erstwhile USSR) has produced the most Grandmasters in the world, followed by the United States and Germany.
Grandmasters in India
- India became a chess powerhouse in the 2000s, and now has more than 70 Grandmasters.
- In 2016, Praggnanandhaa had become the world’s youngest IM at age 10 years, 10 months, and 19 days.
Try this question from CSP 2021:
Q. Consider the following statements in respect of the Laureus World Sports Award which was instituted in the year 2000:
- American golfer Tiger Woods was the first winner of this award.
- The award was received mostly by ‘Formula One’ players so far.
- Roger Federer received this award maximum number of times compared to others.
Which of the above statements are correct?
(a) 1 and 2 only
(b) 2 and 3 only
(c) 1 and 3 only
(d) 1, 2 and 3
Post your answers here.