Magnus Carlsen won Friday to become the world's reigning chess champion. At only age 22, can the young Norwegian's moves shatter the stodgy image of chess and give the game a fresher appeal?
Carlsen won his first World Chess Championship and $1.5 million by defeating Viswanathan Anand in Chennai, India, with a draw in game 10 of their scheduled 12-match series, The Associated Press reported
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Speaking at a news conference after the victory, Carlsen said he was "very very happy to have won and to have completed this match," the BBC reported
"Let's write the history books later!" he added.
Carlsen has already modeled for clothes brand G-STAR and appeared on the cover of GQ magazine, earned a spot on Cosmopolitan magazine's sexiest men of 2013 list and is expected to secure endorsement deals with the combination of his youth and highest ratings in chess history.
"The future belongs to him," said former world champion Garry Kasparov, one of chess' all-time greats, Yahoo Sports reported
. "He has the ability to reach an audience that has previously been shut off to chess. That is a wonderful thing for the game, to have this special talent and the character that goes with it."
Carlsen became a grandmaster, which is the highest title in chess, when he was 13, NPR reported.
He is scheduled for a world tour.
"There is no telling how far his popularity could go," said two-time U.S. women's chess champion Jennifer Shahade, Yahoo Sports reported. "He is a great-looking guy and he has the personality and charisma to appeal to a very broad audience. This is a great time for him — and a great time for chess."
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