Stories of Chess Prodigies

“I played like a child…”  – 13 year old Magnus after a loss in the second game of a two game rapid chess match with Kasparov”

Grandmaster and World Champion Magnus Carlsen

On 26 April 2004 Carlsen became a Grandmaster at the age of thirteen, making him the third-youngest Grandmaster in history. On 1 January 2010 the new FIDE rating list was published, and at the age of nineteen, he became the youngest chess player in history to be ranked world number one, breaking the record previously held by Vladimir Kramnik. His performance at the 2009 Nanjing Pearl Spring Tournament, has been described as one of the greatest in history and lifted him to an Elo rating of 2801, making him the fifth chess player to achieve a rating over 2800 ? and aged 18 years 10 months at the time, by far the youngest to do so.

Sven Magnus Carlsen was born on 30 November 1990 in Tonsberg and currently lives in Haslum, near Norway’s capital, Oslo. He played his first chess tournament at the age of eight and was later coached chess by the country’s top player and chess coach, GM Agdestein. Becoming a Chess Master, Carlsen finished third in the European Under-12 Boys Championship in 2003.

In a blitz chess tournament in Reykjavik, Iceland, Carlsen defeated former world champion Anatoly Karpov on 17 March 2004. The blitz tournament was a preliminary event leading up to a rapid knockout tournament beginning the next day, where Carlsen got an opportunity to play chess with Garry Kasparov and achieved one draw against him . Kasparov was then the top-rated player in the world, before losing to Kasparov after 32 moves of the second game, thus being knocked out of the tournament. In the sixth Dubai Open Chess Championship, held in April 2004, Carlsen obtained his third Grandmaster norm (enough for getting the GM title), and became at the time the world’s youngest Grandmaster and the second youngest person ever to hold GM status (after Sergey Karjakin of Ukraine who attained the feat at 12 years of age in 2002).

Not Only Chess…

“I am not some sort of freak. I might be very good at chess but I’m just a normal person.” – Magnus Carlsen about himself

Magnus Carlsen sees himself as a totally normal guy, who just had the opportunity to learn chess more quickly.

Magnus is not only a talented chess player, but also a growing-up young-man, with varity of interests, trying to have a life beyond the chess.  Playing and learning chess   is not becoming an obsession for Carlsen; he makes sure to have enough time between tournaments to go home in order to do other things, like hiking and skiing, but also playing football in a club (by the way, Real Madrid is his favorite football club).

Recently Magnus Carlsen  has even ventured into modeling, fashing shoot for Dutch fashin brand G-Star Raw, along with the famous actress Liv Tyler, starring in the fashion week in New-York in 2010.

In his free time, as Magnus told in his interview to the German news magazine Der Spiegel in 2010, he rarely goes out for drinks at night, but rather prefer chatting with friends on the Internet or play poker online.

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