Few people are aware that Yuzvendra Chahal, India’s star white-ball leg-spinner, was a talented chess player at a young age, and has represented India at junior levels. However, this time around, he has a tough task at his hands. The Royal Challengers Bangalore spinner takes on triple world chess champion Vishwanathan Anand in a charity match to collect funds for COVID-19 relief. Yzuvendra’s wife, Dhanashree Verma Chahal, turned to Instagram to spread the word.
Viswanathan Anand will meet Yuzvendra Chahal in a series of exhibition face-off organized by Akshaya Patra Foundations. They are in partnership with Chess.com India, and Prachura Padakannaya, the CEO of Xcetra Talent Management as part of the ‘Checkmate COVID Celebrity Edition’ project.
Except for the game with Yuzvendra Chahal, Viswanathan Anand is scheduled to be up against Bollywood actors Aamir Khan and Riteish Deshmukh, Kannada film star Kiccha Sudeep, along with singer Arijit Singh. Song-writer Ananya Birla, Xiaomi India’s MD Manu Kumar Jain, Zerodha’s co-founder Nikhil Kamath, and film producer Sajid Nadiadwala, and Prachura Padakannaya are also on the list.
The charity event said in a statement, “since March 2020, the Foundation has served over 128 million meals to people from vulnerable communities, who are facing difficulty arranging food for themselves due to the COVID-19 pandemic and containment measures to curb the outbreak”.
Vishwanathan Anand updated his fans on Twitter after Dhanashree Verma broke the news to her fans. On Sunday, June 13 at 5 PM, the chess matches will be live-streamed on Chess.com’s YouTube channel. During the live stream, viewers can donate via the live chat.
The RCB spinner is at home as of now, but will go to Mumbai on June 14 to begin a 14-day quarantine in preparation for India’s tour to Sri Lanka. Beginning July 13, India will play three ODIs and as many T20 Internationals in Colombo. It will be a chance for Chahal, who has recently struggled with his form. With the ICC T20 World Cup just around the corner, he will be looking to reclaim his form.