The first game of the FIDE World Cup final between India’s Praggnanandhaa and World No 1 Magnus Carlsen ended in a draw after 35 moves.
Both players will return for Game 2 of the final tomorrow in Baku, Azerbaijan.
In his run to the final, the 18-year-old Praggnanandhaa beat world number two Fabiano Caruana of the United States in the semifinal as well as world number three Hikaru Nakamura, also of the US, in an earlier round.
Praggnanandhaa from Chennai will be vying to become the first Indian to win the title since 2002, when India’s Chess great Viswanathan Anand won his second world title.
Anand led the reaction to Praggnanandhaa’s World Cup semifinal win. He lauded his young compatriot with “What a performance!” in a post on X.
Praggnanandhaa’s rise to fame began in 2016, when he became the youngest International Master in history at age 10.
Praggnanandhaa began playing the game at the age of three with encouragement from his parents. By the age of seven, he had earned the title of FIDE Master, the third-highest title a chess player can achieve after the Grandmaster and International Master titles.