Interview:   Sundararajan Kidambi

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By Saritha Dhanraj

Q. What hopes did you have before this event and how far has it gone for you?
A. Actually I came with a hope  to qualify for the National "A" before playing this event by coming in the top twelve and also not to lose a single game but to either  win or draw as far as possible. Unfortunalately it didn't work up to my expectation. I lost two games in the middle which I could have comfortably drawn. I lost to Mahesh Chandran. In that game I  was having an easy draw but got myself into check mate.  I could have easily escaped, I think I made a blunder here. Nothing was upto my expectation. Hard luck.

Q. How long did you prepare for this event and with whom, person  or computer?
A. Normally I dont prepare for specific events like this.  I work with Sasikiran and also work on the computer. Sasikiran and I work together while we are  in Chennai. I accompanied him to National 'A' and was working with him there. Before this event I had been as a second to Sasikiran in National 'A'.


Sundararajan Kidambi

Q. How many hours of chess do you practice on an average basis?
A. Eight hours every day.

Q. Isn't that too long?
A. I don't play chess for eight hours continuously, I play chess say for four hours in the morning and  for four hours in the evening. During my exams I don't follow this pattern, but only prepare for my exams.

Q. How many National 'B' and  'A' have you played so far including this one?
A. Well.....including this one I have played National 'B' seven times. Once I qualified for National 'A'.

Q. How do you see the result of the recent Anand-Kramnik match at Mainz?
A. Expected Anand to win. No two ways about this, but he could have won easily. Though he was losing in many games he made it at the end. I somehow personally feel Anand is better at Rapid Chess.

Q. Tell us about yourself: hobbies, favourite players?
A. I like reading the best and watching cricket. Anand and Kasparov are my favourite chess players.

Q. Which has been your career best achievement so far and why?
A. Completing my IM title. I consider it as my career best achievement because I did not complete that in India. I went abroad completed three norms. I really had a tough time. First two norms I made in two tournaments but had to really struggle for a year and finally fought for it and got it.

Q. When do you hope to complete your GM title?
A. Well.....I have to play some more tournaments and improve my rating. Currently I have an Elo of 2420. To become a GM I require 2500 Elo. So deciding to play GM tournaments outside India. Of course Goodricke in India. Hopefully planning to finish in two or three years.

Q.Tell us how you learnt chess and your family?
A. It was all accidental. Initially I was playing chess with my friends and suddenly got interested. One of my friends suggested me to join the tal chess club. That was how I originally started to play chess. Later on I had many coaches to guide me.

Q. Any other chess player in your family?
A. I'm the first player in my family. After me my brother B.R.Kidambi has started to play and is doing well.

Q. How supportive were your parents?
A. Indeed very supportive. Like they bought me books on chess, chess software and a computer when I wanted. Besides all this they sent me to play tournaments outside India by taking the entire expense on them.  That helped me in completing my IM norm. Thanks to my parents.

Q. Who is your coach?
A. Sasikiran's father Mr. Krishnan is my coach. I and Sasi practice together, he has also been achieving and he is my source of inspiration.

Q. How do you view the reduced four hour session in chess?
A. I think many players are finding it very difficult.  Quality of the game is going down. May be in a course of time say one or two years the chess players will get adjusted to the reduced four hour session in chess.

Q. Where are you heading next?
A. Asian junior in Teheran and some open tournments in Europe.
 
 
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