13-year-old from Penang takes down Slovakian chess grandmaster

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By: Patrick Beech

13-year-old from Penang takes down Slovakian chess grandmaster

Recently, 13-year-old Poh Yu Tian from Penang took down a 64-year-old Slovakian chess grandmaster at the Chess Olympiad in India.

Poh had started playing chess just six years ago and attended his first chess class when he was seven.

Soon, his coach from the Penang Chess Association noticed his potential and enrolled him in several school-level competitions.

Yu Tian’s breakthrough came in 2017 after winning the under-8 category at the National Youth and Junior U-20 Chess Championship.

In 2021, Yu Tian bagged the Blitz Championships and the National Rapid, which earned him a spot on the national team for the Hanoi SEA Games.

Recently, he represented the national team at the Chess Olympiad in Chennai, India, which took place from July 28 to August 9.

In Round 2, something remarkable happened as Yu Tian surprisingly defeated grandmaster Lubomir Ftacnik from Slovakia, helping Malaysia draw the match with the Slovaks.

Yu Tian will next make an appearance at the 17th Malaysian Chess Festival, scheduled from September 2 to September 11 at Cititel Mid Valley where he will compete in the Datuk Arthur Tan Malaysia Open Championship.

“I don’t think much about my opponent or how strong they are.

“I just focus on my game and do my best, while enjoying every move I make,” said Yu Tian, who is the youngest in the family.