The Tirupati sisters, who casually started playing chess with their grandfather, have now turned solid professionals after taking part in prestigious tournaments and bagging the coveted FIDE rating.
It all started with Vonti Tripurambika (10) picking up pace in the game, winning one tournament after the other in Andhra Pradesh, Telangana and Tamil Nadu, while the younger one Vonti Guruvarshini (7) started walking in her sister’s footsteps to bag laurels.
After winning a State-level event earlier this year in Visakhapatnam, Tripurambika advanced to the national championship conducted in Jammu in May, thus getting into the top 16 among the 100 players.
She made eyes turn with an impressive FIDE rating of 1183 (classical) and 1201 (rapid) as acknowledged by World Chess Federation and All India Chess Federation.
The younger sister has a FIDE classical rating of 1074. This, their coaches M. Kalyan Chakravarthy (Guntur) and P.R. Anand Mohan (Tirupati) expect, will improve as they continue to play more events.
Tripurambika came fifth in the U-10 category in the 44th FIDE Chess Olympiad held at Chennai in July, while the little Sri Guruvarshini came third in the U-7 category, in the open category competition attended by 1400 players.
The elder one took her winning streak to a new high by getting the 19th slot among twenty players at the World Cadets Chess Championship 2022 conducted at Batumi, Georgia last fortnight.
In the event represented by 68 countries, she won five, lost two and drew in four, out of the eleven rounds, playing against peers from Poland, Bulgaria, Russia, Singapore, Greece, Turkey, USA, Georgia and Turkmenistan.
Their father V. Pratap, a local businessman, observed his daughters’ stunning IQ when they learnt and recited Bhagavad Gita with ease at the school. He also observed the elder one easily defeating her grandfather in the game of chess every time.
“It then struck me that they are made for something beyond the academics and we decided to train them in chess”, Mr. Pratap told The Hindu.
Every tournament turned out to be a new experience for their parents, who undertook a family tour across the country, leaving no opportunity to prove their daughters’ mettle.