English News


Chess legend Viswanathan Anand and Israeli great Boris Gelfand to mentor Indian players ahead of Olympiad

Anand and Gelfand will motivate players ahead of the Olympiad

Five-time world champion Viswanathan Anand and Israeli chess great Boris Gelfand will work in tandem to guide the Indian chess players ahead of the 44th Chess Olympiad scheduled to be held in India for the first time from July 28.  

The All India Chess Federation (AICF) announced today the bringing together of the two legends for the home team's first coaching camp in Chennai (May 7-17) with an aim to enhance medal chances at the prestigious event.

Apart from winning the World Cup in 2009, Gelfand has competed in 11 Chess Olympiads. He was ranked in the top-30 in FIDE rankings from 1990 to 2017 during his 27-year long astonishing career. The 52-year-old has also trained some of the top international players in the past, helping them succeed in big events.

The former world champion in rapid chess, Koneru Humpy believes the decision to appoint Gelfand in addition to mentor Anand, will motivate the players ahead of the Olympiad, which will be conducted in India for the first time ever, beginning July 28 in Chennai.  

“Well, I don't often participate in the coaching camps in general. This time having Gelfand and Anand as coach and mentor will definitely motivate the team and for sure there will be a lot to learn from their experience,” she said.

The author of numerous popular books like ‘Dynamic decision making in chess’, ‘Technical decision making in chess’ and ‘Positional decision making in chess’ to name a few, Gelfand will use his in-depth technical as well as strategic knowledge of the game while interacting and training the Indian players in the camp.

“With the numerous decision-making books authored by Gelfand we hope that our decision to rope in Gelfand pays off,” added AICF Secretary Bharat Singh Chauhan.  

The 11-day coaching camp will be intensive and gruelling with players involved in six to seven hours of rigorous training in a day. The players will also have a regular routine of yoga and meditation to enhance their mental will power along with physical strength training.

Grandmaster Sasikiran, a member of the bronze-winning team at Tromso in 2014 and also an individual silver medallist at the same Olympiad, is also excited to work with Gelfand.

“I am a big fan of him and this is the first time that I would be training with such a strong player though we have played a few games against each other,” he said.

Also Read: Modi and Macron envision making India-France Strategic Partnership 'a force for global good'