HomeSportsChessCandidates 2024: Humpy’s Quest and Praggnanandhaa’s Surprise Surge!
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Candidates 2024: Humpy’s Quest and Praggnanandhaa’s Surprise Surge!

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The curtain is set to rise on Wednesday for the highly anticipated and demanding chess tournament of the season, the Candidates 2024. This year’s competition holds particular significance, with five Indian players among the 16 contenders, including two siblings. R Praggnanandhaa, D Gukesh, and Vidith Gujrathi will be participating in the Open Candidates category, while Vaishali, sister of Praggnanandhaa, and the world’s fifth-ranked player, Koneru Humpy, will be competing in the Women’s Candidates. The victor of the Candidates tournament will earn the opportunity to play in the next World Championship match.

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With India closely following the event, Koneru Humpy carries the nation’s highest hopes for success, closely followed by the young prodigy Praggnanandhaa. With nearly twenty years dedicated to her chess career, Humpy stands out as the lone Indian among the five contenders with prior experience in the Candidates tournament. Her aim now is to clinch victory in this prestigious event, adding another milestone to her impressive list of accomplishments.

At the age of 37, Humpy demonstrates exceptional perseverance, determination, and expertise, positioning herself as the world’s fifth-ranked player as she enters the competition. Her impressive track record against her current opponents underscores her readiness to pursue victory. Notably, she has previously defeated Aleksandra Goryachkina and boasts a flawless 4-0 record against defending champion Lei Tingjie, both of whom are widely regarded as top contenders in the women’s division.

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Praggnanandhaa surprised many observers with his impressive performance in the previous year’s World Cup, ultimately securing the runner-up position, albeit losing to the renowned Magnus Carlson. With Carlson’s decision to abstain from the upcoming Candidates tournament, Pragganandhaa is poised to contend for victory. Renowned for his exceptional composure and sharp intellect, Praggnanandhaa has demonstrated remarkable calmness even in the most tense situations, consistently making astute moves. However, his greatest obstacle looms in the form of the two-time defending champion Ian Nepomniachtchi, who has emerged victorious in the last two Candidates events. Additionally, seasoned players such as Fabiano Caruana and Nakamura from the USA are expected to be formidable contenders. Praggnanandhaa must deliver his utmost performance to surpass these challengers and secure victory.

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