Chess prodigy Nihal Sarin won the 2023 Sportstar Aces Popular Choice Award for Spirit of Sports (Examples of Sportstmanship) at the Taj Mahal Palace in Mumbai on Monday.
“Thank you to The Hindu group and Sportstar for nominating me for this award. I am not a great speaker, but I am really thankful for this recognition,” said a smiling Sarin.
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Sarin won praise for his sportsmanship when he resigned in three moves against World No. 2 Ding Liren after the Chinese player lost the game due to poor internet connection in the Speed Chess Championship.
Nihal had a 3.0-2.0 lead over Liren, who failed to register a move and ran out of time during their match in the Speed Chess Championship knockouts. However, in a surprise move, the 18-year-old Nihal chose to resign in just three moves, bringing the score to 4.0-3.0.
Former India cricketer Sunil Gavaskar, former India hockey captain M. M. Somaya, chess great Viswanathan Anand, former India football skipper Bhaichung Bhutia, Olympic gold medallist Abhinav Bindra and Olympians Anjali Bhagwat and Aparna Popat are the members of the Sportstar Aces 2023 jury.
The event is supported by IDFC First Bank, Indian Oil, India Cements, United India, Ramaiah University, Experimenta Science Center GD Naidu Charity, Finolex Pipes, LIC, BPCL, Samsonite, Big Basket, Nippon Paint, CRICHQ, Wordswork, NewsX and Casagrand.