8-year-old chess prodigy becomes youngest to beat grandmaster


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8-year-old chess prodigy becomes youngest to beat grandmaster

PRODIGY. Young chess standout Ashwath Kaushik picked up the sport on his own.

CHESS.COM/Singapore Chess Federation

Indian-born Ashwath Kaushik smashes a world record as the 8-year-old becomes the youngest player to stun a grandmaster in classical chess

An eight-year-old became the youngest player to defeat a grandmaster in classical chess on Sunday, February 18, when Ashwath Kaushik beat Poland’s Jacek Stopa at the Burgdorfer Stadthaus Open in Switzerland.

Indian-born Ashwath, who lives in Singapore, defeated 37-year-old Stopa to break the world record set a month earlier by Leonid Ivanovic from Serbia when he beat Grandmaster Milko Popchev, according to the website.

Ivanovic is also aged eight but was born five months before Ashwath.

“It felt really exciting and amazing, and I felt proud of my game and how I played, especially since I was worse at one point but managed to come back from that,” Ashwath told

Ashwath learned to play the game at the age of four and became a World Under-Eight Rapid Champion in 2022, the website said.

“He picked it up on his own, playing with his grandparents,” his father, Kaushik Sriram, said.

“It’s surreal as there isn’t really any sports tradition in our families. Every day is a new discovery, and we sometimes stumble in search of the right pathway for him.”

Ashwath finished the tournament in 12th place after losing to International Master Harry Grieve. –

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