Ransom Everglades student Nikhil Kumar wins World Cadets Chess Championship
8th grader ranked 25th at start of competition
By Amanda Batchelor – Senior Digital Editor
Posted: 1:37 PM, November 01, 2016
MIAMI – Ransom Everglades eighth-grader Nikhil Kumar traveled all the way to Batumi, Georgia to take part in the World Cadets Chess Championship and came back to the U.S. this week after pulling off a victory.
Kumar finished in first place in the Oct. 18-31 championship, winning eight times and collecting three draws.
Coming in as the underdog, Kumar defeated No. 1 Rameshbabu Praggnanandhaa, of India, who at 10 became the youngest person ever to claim the title of chess International Master.
He also defeated Andrew Hong, who is the No. 1 ranked under-12 player in the U.S.
“Becoming the world chess champion seemed like a dream just a few months ago but hard work made this dream become a reality,” Kumar said. “When I was at the podium and the national anthem was played, I felt that I represented the country and Team USA well.”
Kumar flew back to the U.S. on Halloween and returned to middle school on Tuesday.
“We were thrilled to hear of Nikhil’s success in the chess world championships,” head of the middle school Rachel Rodriguez said. “He is talented and hard-working, and has represented Ransom Everglades with class and dignity. We are proud to welcome him back to our campus today.”
A total of 137 students from 36 nations took part in the under-12 division. Kumar ranked 25th at the start of the competition.
Besides chess, Kumar’s favorite past times include playing the violin, tennis and participating in Mathcounts at Ransom Everglades.