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Vishy's December #03 - In India, chess = Anand!

by Sagar Shah - 04/12/2019

Today Sethuraman is well-known and respected grandmaster in the world of chess. He has won the national title, the asian title and also been a member of the bronze medal winning Indian team at the Tromso Olympiad. But around 15 years ago when he was taking his first few steps in the world of chess, his meetings with Anand changed the way he looked at the sport. In this article Sethuraman recounts his meetings with the legend and how they inspired him to become a stronger player. This December, ChessBase India is celebrating the month as Vishy's December in honour of the Indian chess legend Vishy Anand turning 50 years old. If you have a story, experience or an anecdote related to Anand which you would like to share with the chess world, you can send it to us at 

Life changing meets with Anand

by S.P. Sethuraman

A 10-year-old Sethuraman receives his prize from Vishy Anand!

I met Vishy Anand a couple of times from the age of 7-8 at felicitation functions and at prize award functions when he was the chief guest. Personally the most memorable one was before World youth U-16 which was held at Batumi. So before the event I got a call from Mrs. Aruna Anand. I was spell-bounded and could hardly talk over the phone. She invited me to their home and Anand spent some time with me, patiently answering all my curious questions. I was thrilled to receive tips from a great legend like him.

A life changing moment with Vishy Anand 

Felicitating Anand after he successfully defeated Kramnik in the World Championship Match of 2008

Adaptability and consistency are the two main qualities of Anand that have inspired me a lot. Even at the age of 50 he is one of the best players in the world. I think his undying passion and curiosity to learn new things irrespective of his stature is the reason behind his longevity.

From receiving prizes at the hands of Anand, Sethuraman fought against him as his opponent at the Isle of Man 2017 and 2018. In 2017 he lost with the black pieces, but in 2018, he was able to hold Vishy to a draw

What does Vishy mean for chess in India? His name means chess in India! He has inspired many generations of players to take up chess in India.

The most recent picture of Sethuraman with Vishy

I love many games played by Anand. It's very hard to pick one. Anand-Adams 2005 in San Luis comes to my mind right now.

I wish Anand many more happy returns of the day! I wish him a great health and I am sure he will continue to inspire us in the years to come. 

About the author:

S.P.Sethuraman is one of India's finest grandmasters in chess. He became the national champion of India in 2014. He was part of the Indian team at the Tromso Olympiad where the team won a bronze medal. He was the Asian Champion in 2016.

Previous articles in Vishy's December

#01: Anand Viswanathanovich by Ravi Abhyankar

#02: Inspiration, teammate, second by Sandipan Chanda

Want to share an Anand story this December?

This entire December, ChessBase India is celebrating Vishy Anand's 50th birthday. We would like you to contribute any interesting story that you might have with Anand so that we can publish it on our newspage. In case you would like to share, you can do so from this google form link. Alternatively you can also send it to us via

The best article, anecdote, or story submitted and published on our newspage will get this ChessBase 15 copy signed by Vishy Anand!

Make sure you get your hands on Vishy Anand's book Mind Master (written by the man himself), which will be launched on 13th of December 2019.

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