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Moksh Amit Doshi - The latest IM from Gujarat

by Shahid Ahmed - 02/10/2020

Moksh Amit Doshi became the latest International Master from Gujarat. He scored six IM-norms in just over 16 months, but he became an IM only when he crossed the 2400 rating barrier on 29th October 2019 at the second round of Romanian International Open. He scored his maiden IM-norm at a Round-Robin event in Balaton, Hungary in June 2018. He scored his second IM-norm at Rilton Cup 2018-19. The final norm was scored at Asian Youth Under-16 Open when he won Gold. Get to know about this young talent's journey from the boy Moksh himself. He also shares seven of his game with detailed annotations. Photo: Rupali Mullick

Moksh scores six IM-norms before becoming an IM

On 29th October 2019, Moksh Amit Doshi became the latest International Master from Gujarat. He scored six IM-norms in a span of just over 16 months. Moksh scored his first IM-norm at a Round-Robin tournament at Balaton, Hungary. He made his second IM-norm at Rilton Cup 2018-19 and the final IM-norm was scored at Asian Youth Under-16 Open in 2019. The talented young player from Gujarat has played tournaments in Spain, Malaysia, Russia, Vietnam, Dubai, Bangkok, Hungary, Latvia, Isle of Man, Sweden, Gibraltar, Serbia, Greece, Czech Republic, Abu Dhabi, Romania, Croatia and various parts of India. So when it comes to experience, don't go by his age, he definitely has a wealth of experience.  He has also been State Under-11 and State Sub-Junior (Under-15) champion and a few podium finishes in other State championships.

Gujarat's latest IM Moksh Amit Doshi | Photo: Rupali Mullick

After Tejas Bakre, Ankit Rajpara (both are GM now), Fenil Shah, meet the latest International Master from Gujarat, 17-year-old Moksh Amit Doshi. I decided to catch up with him and get a glimpse of his journey towards the IM title.

 

Shahid Ahmed (SA): Congratulations for becoming one of the latest IM of India. How did it feel when you completed the IM-title requirements?

Moksh Doshi (MD): Thank you very much. I felt very relieved when I got the IM-title. I have been working hard for the last two years for getting the IM-title and I finally crossed the 2400-rating barrier in a tournament at Alba Lulia, Romania in November 2019.

Moksh crossed 2400 barrier by winning his first two games at Alba Lulia, Romania in November 2019 | Photo: Moksh

SA: What does the title mean to you?

MD: The IM title means a lot to me. It’s by far the biggest achievement in my chess career. Before that I had achieved the Gold medal in Asian Youth (U-16) at Sri Lanka in April 2019.

 

SA: Where did you make your IM-norms and cross the 2400 rating barrier?

MD: I made my first IM-norm at an IM Round-Robin tournament in Balaton, Hungary in June 2018.

Moksh made his maiden IM-norm with a performance of 2477, scoring 6.5/9 and finished second at Balaton, Hungary

Then I scored my second IM-norm at Rilton Cup in Stockholm, Sweden in January 2019.

With a performance of 2473 with a score of 5.0/9 helped him gain 55 valuable Elo rating points

I achieved my final IM-norm by winning the Gold medal at Asian Youth Under-16.

Moksh scored his final IM-norm by virtue of winning Gold in Asian Youth Under-16 Open in 2019 | Photo: Moksh

An unbeaten 8.0/9 earned Moksh the Gold at Asian Youth U-16 Open in 2019 and his third IM-norm

I actually had six IM-norms as I was not able to cross the 2400 rating barrier.

Moksh scored six IM-norms in just over 16 months | Source: FIDE

I finally crossed 2400 rating Alba Lulia, Romania in November 2019.

Moksh in action at Romanian International Open in November 2019 | Photo: Marius Ceteraş

Moksh fulfilled his IM title requirements by winning the first two games

SA: Tell us about your chess journey. When did you start playing chess? Where are you from?

MD: I started playing chess when I was around 7-years-old in 2010. At that point I was living in Khambhat, Gujarat but then in 2012, my family shifted to Ahmedabad for better chess coaching facilities.

 

SA: Who is your coach?

MD: Right now I am trained by Ukranian GM Alexander Goloshchapov.

SA: After Tejas, Ankit and Fenil, now you are the fourth ever IM from Gujarat. Do you think chess in Gujarat is becoming stronger by the day?

MD: Yes, I think Gujarat chess is getting better now. Gujarat State Chess Association is helping the player by organizing tournaments in Gujarat. Since the last two years they have organized Grandmaster tournaments and also by organizing chess camps with strong GMs and IMs.

Moksh with Gujarat State Chess Association officials | Photo: Moksh

SA: You became an IM at the age of 16 years, how did you balance chess and studies?

MD: I think balancing chess and academics is very important. Usually I prepared for exams around one month before them. Last year I gave my class 10 board exams, which went pretty good. Right now I am also preparing for the class 12 board exams, which I will give around March 2021.

 

SA: How much support have you received from your family and school?

MD: I have got the family support throughout my chess career. My parents and my sister has been very supporting all the years so far. And my school Supath English Medium School has also been very helpful, they give leave for my chess practice and tournaments.

Moksh's family greets him at the Ahmedabad airport after he became an IM | Photo: Moksh

SA: I saw that you played open tournaments in Sweden, Isle of Man, Spain, Latvia, Hungary, Bangkok, Romania, Vietnam and various other countries. Do you always aim to play strong events?

MD: Yes, I think if one wants to achieve titles like IM and GM, I believe it’s better to play strong open tournaments. There they get the opportunity to play against strong GMs and IMs, which will largely improve their play and chess strength. It will also help to improve their rating and achieving GM and IM-norms.

Moksh with seven time World Champion Vishy Anand at Isle of Man 2018 | Photo: Moksh

SA: Do you have any sponsors or you played all tournaments abroad on your own?

MD: No, right now I don’t have any sponsors. I am playing abroad tournaments and spending chess coaching fees on my own.

Moksh with Dubai Open 2017 winner GM Gawain Jones of England | Photo: Moksh

SA: Whom would you like to thank for all your success?

MD: I would like to thank my family, my parents and my sister Mahi Doshi (who is also a good chess player) for their moral support throughout the years. And I would also like to thank my coach GM Alexander Goloshchapov, Gujarat State Chess Association (GSCA) and my school Supath for their support.

 

SA: What books/materials did you use on your journey towards the IM title?

MD: I usually studied from Quality Chess Books and Mark Dvoretsky books. GM Jacob Aagaard’s Grandmaster Preparation series has been very helpful for my chess improvement and also books by GM Gelfand and GM Shankland have been very instructive. I have studied many ChessBase DVDs like GM Karsten Muller’s Endgame series which is also very good for chess improvement.

SA: What are you doing currently in terms of academics?

MD: Currently, I am in twelfth standard and I am pursuing commerce stream. I will give my board exams next year.

Moksh at Hoogeveen Open 2019 with Dutch legend GM Loek van Wely | Photo: Moksh

SA: How are you dealing with the unprecedented pandemic situation?

MD: Right now, I am focusing on improving my chess. This pandemic, in a way helps me to reflect my game and understand it better. Now I have much time to improve my weaknesses and chess in general. I am playing some online tournaments but I am looking forward to play over the board tournaments, once this pandemic is over.

Moksh at Isle of Man 2018 with strong Indian titled players | Photo: Moksh

SA: Now that you have become an IM, what's next for you?

MD: Now my main goal is to achieve the Grandmaster title and improve my rating.

 

SA: Thank you Moksh for taking the time to answer these questions, I wish you all the best in your future endeavors.

MD: Thank you very much for the interview. It’s my pleasure!

 

Moksh annotates

Some more annotated best games of Moksh.