Norwegian wunderkind Magnus Carlsen is your new World Chess Champion, unseating India's Viswanathan Anand on Friday to take the mantle of the best player alive. A draw in the tenth game of their heavyweight series gave Carlsen the half-point he needed to clinch the title and the $1.5 million first prize.
The Norwegian, nicknamed the “Mozart of Chess,” mated Anand in games five, six, and nine to take a nearly insurmountable lead. Today's draw in 65 moves added another half-point to each player's total, clinching a Carlsen win, with 6.5 points to Anand's 3.5.
The battle of youth versus experience drew huge ratings in both of the players' home countries. According to the championship's official website, over 100 million people tuned in every day to watch each of the matches live.
Anand, the 43-year old "Tiger from Madras" and previous five-time champion, has now fallen to eighth in the world chess rankings. Carlsen, meanwhile, is launching the other direction. He became a grandmaster at age 13, and now has the highest ranking ever for a chess player. He is the first world chess champion from the West since American Bobby Fischer — to whom Carlsen is frequently and favorably compared — last held the title in 1975.
This article is from the archive of our partner The Wire.
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