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Friday, October 12, 2012

My Dad's My Best Trainer: Koneru Humpy

Chess blog for latest chess news and chess trivia (c) Alexandra Kosteniuk, 2012

Hi everyone,

We found this nice interview of the world's top-rated women chess players and the World Chess Championship challenger, Koneru Humpy of India. She says, "I can never be faulted for want of preparation". Here are some more excerpts:

Koneru Humpy, who finished second in the overall standings of the FIDE World Grand Prix Series with a victory in the final round in Ankara is now back to No. 2 in world rankings.

According to Humpy, 25, the best part of her showing in Turkey was the way in which she recorded crucial wins with black pieces. (Humpy finished with a score of 5.5 from six games with black pieces.) “This is something which has not happened in the past. Apparently, I am pleased with this and it should help me a long way in my preparations,” said Humpy in an exclusive interview with Sportstar.The 2001 World junior champion said that the Ankara edition of the Grand Prix Series was very tough as most of the big guns barring Hou Yifan were present. Yifan skipped the event having already won the overall title.

“I met some very strong players including Stefanova Antoaneta in the first-half itself. By the end of ninth round, I was half-a-point behind, but two wins in the last two games eventually helped me emerge winner,” said Humpy, who is based in Vijayawada (Andhra Pradesh, India.

"I don't think I need a "trainer" at this moment of my career. I am more than happy with my father-cum-coach," says Humpy.

“Rankings don’t matter really at this level; they can only help you in terms of stature. However, when it comes to winning, what is more relevant is how well you are prepared and (how efficiently you) execute your strategies on a given day,” she said.

Humpy has the distinction of being the only female player after Judith Polgar to cross the 2600 Elo mark. “It is a nice feeling to break that barrier. But right now, I am preparing for the bigger challenges like the World Championship (knock-out) this year-end,” she said.

Humpy, who also finished second in the 2009-11 FIDE Women’s Grand Prix Series, is not ready to stay content. “It is still a long way to go. Each player is vastly studied by the rival camps. It is so easy these days because of computers. However, I look at this as a two-way process, for players like me also have enough database when we prepare for the major events,” she said.

Talking of her immediate targets, Humpy, a recipient of the Arjuna Award and the Padma Shri, said: “Right now there are no specific targets. But, yes, I would love to keep working on openings and middle-games in preparation for the major battles ahead.”

She is very pleased that now there are more chances of being a world champion because of the different formats in play. “This is good for chess and for the players too,” she said.

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