Ruling the squares

Five-time World Champion Vishwanathan Anand.   | Photo Credit: KIRILL KUDRYAVTSEV

A packed hall greeted five-time world champion Viswanathan Anand last Sunday during the programme organised by NIIT whose brand ambassador he is. Surrounded by journalists eager to grab a sound bite, Anand remained calm and composed answering all the questions without any complaints or demands. This was the rapid fire for NXg.

What do you eat everyday? Almonds?

Ha Ha. Nothing of that sort. Healthy eating habits should be maintained. Almonds definitely help in improving memory.

There were former players who were stating that you have grown older and you lack motivation. How do you deal with such issues?

I usually don't read newspapers during World Championships. My team just tells me about the tactical errors mentioned in them. But yes, I don't think anyone can question my motivation as Chess means everything to me. Age does set in, but with age you get experience too.

Kavalek described you as ‘the most versatile player ever ‘– what do you attribute as the reason behind it?

He is just generous in his compliment. I thank him for that.

You are good friends with Gelfland and many others. How do you manage your friendship even after beating them on numerous occasions?

Interesting one. Gelfland has always been a tough competitor on board and good friend off board. I don't think our game affects our friendship.

Your support system?

My wife Aruna, my parents, my entire family and obviously the team that works so hard to make me win.

Your message for the youth...

Be sincere and work hard consistently, you will achieve your goals.


Anand has been crowned World Champion for the fifth time but the news didn't trigger the hype or celebrations that KKR's IPL victory did. Why?

A general boost

How many Indians take pride or otherwise are at least aware of the fact that Anand is the undisputed five-time World Chess Champion? With events like the IPL we forget to respect and admire the importance of other sports which becomes the primary reason that these profound efforts are often discarded. To check this, it is required of us to bolster other sports as well, and thus lead our nation to bigger achievements.

Siddarth Jain, I, V Year, SRM University


I feel the visual media is much attracted to mega events involving money bashes and stardom while totally neglecting other prominent sport events. The recent example of sidelining our chess prodigy Viswanathan Anand who won the World Chess Championship for the fourth consecutive time makes us believe that the Indian media dances to the tune of some big- wigs. The media had started propagation about IPL even six months before it had actually started. It is a national shame that while V.Anand is immensely respected and recognized for his success worldwide, our media failed to give his achievement, the importance it deserves.

Rejitha Nath, IV Year, SRM University

Hardly any coverage

In a cricket-fanatic country like India, no other sport is given even half the publicity (necessary and unwanted - expert opinion/affairs/marriages). As the city's ‘yellow' brigade returned home disappointed, words of encouragement, determination and achievement flooded social networking sites. People failed to even acknowledge. Vishwanathan Anand's triumphant win at the World Chess Championship —all it made was one headline for ONE day compared to half our newspapers being eaten up by IPL news over the last 45 days. It is sad that in a talented-diverse country no other sport is given even half the encouragement and support as cricket

Neha Duseja, Brand Associate, Rediffusion

Unsung heroes

I think it's sad that in a country of billions the only ONE sport that seems to dominate — to the exclusion of all else — is cricket. But the personalities who have truly made a mark on history like Viswanathan Anand who won the World chess Championship FIVE times seem to be have been forgotten by the media completely.

Kavya Raghavan, Arts student


On May 30, one of India's all time best sportsperson, Viswanathan Anand, won his fifth World Chess Championship, but made headlines only for a day and did not get the attention compared to an IPL hero. IPL celebration shows that people in India do enjoy sporting success; however an equivalent recognition needs to be propagated towards other significant games like chess.

Nikita Punwani, III Year MOP Vaishnav College

Our code of editorial values

Related Topics
This article is closed for comments.
Please Email the Editor

Printable version | Sep 25, 2021 12:15:48 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/features/metroplus/nxg/ruling-the-squares/article3496507.ece

Next Story