Leon Mendonca became India’s 67th chess Grandmaster by winning his third and final norm in a tournament in Italy. Mendonca, who achieved the feat at 14 years, nine months and 17 days, is the second GM from Goa.
He achieved his first GM norm at the Rigo Chess GM Round Robin in October while the second came at the 1st Saturday event in Budapest in November.
The final norm came at the Vergani Cup in Italy, where he finished second with 6.5 points behind Ukraine’s Vitaliy Bernadskiy (7).
Mendonca and his father Lyndon were stranded in Europe in March due to the lockdown and travel restrictions.
Mendonca took part in several tournaments with an aim of achieving the GM title.
Between March and December, Mendonca played in 16 tournaments and improved to 2544 from an ELO rating of 2452 points.
Mendonca thanked those who supported him through thick and thin.