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Wednesday, September 4, 2013

World Jr Blind Chess Bronze for Darpan

Nineteen-year-old Vadodara boy Darpan Irani is back home after making a splash at the World Individual Junior Blind Chess Championship at Belgrade in Serbia.

At the event, organised by the International Braille Chess Association from August 21 and September 1, Darpan won a bronze medal — a first medal win in the category by India in 16 years since the country's blind chess federation was recognised by the international recognising body.

Darpan defeated his nearest rival from Serbia in the world junior individual braille chess championship to emerge third, missing silver medal by just half a point.
However, Darpan is more than happy to have won the first medal for his country, and believes he could have done much better had he focused more on practising chess rather than on his Chartered Accountancy studies, which are equally important for him if not more.

"This is the first time India has won any medal in this category, and I am glad to have emerged victorious. It was a do-or-die situation in the last round, as drawing was not an option. Drawing would not have fetched me a medal," he said.

Though, this was the first time Darpan won big, it wasn't the first time he played at the international level. He played in Serbia in 2010 and in Greece in 2011

This was the first time he had travelled abroad without his parents accompanying him. "Organisers insisted on my parents accompanying me but I refused, because I would have to become independent someday. After a lot of discussions and deliberations, they finally agreed," he said.

Of the nine games that were played in the tourney, Inani could not perform well in the first four, which dimmed his chance to win gold. "There were some miscalculations due to time pressure, so I had to repeat moves. Moreover, I made some technical errors in between," he said.

Darpan already has several wins to his credit. He became the youngest person to win the national chess championship for the blind in 2010. -- PTI

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