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General Jan 4, 2022 | 10:23 PMby Tarjei Svensen

17-year-old World Champ gifted flat by Presidential decree

After shocking the chess world by sensationally winning the World Rapid Chess Championship, 17-year-old Nodirbek Abdusattorov was yesterday celebrated at home in Uzbekistan. The prodigy received a huge cash prize, the keys to a two-room apartment and a Presidential medal in a packed ceremony at the headquarters of the National Olympic Commitee in the country's capital Tashkent.

Nodirbek Abdusattorov receives a state medal from Presidential advisor Abdujabbor Abduvakhidov | photo: National Olympic Committee Uzbekistan

Nodirbek Abdusattorov's World Championship title didn't go unnoticed at home in Uzbekistan. The 17-year-old is about to become a national hero after his sensational performance in Warsaw where he defeated Magnus Carlsen, Fabiano Caruana, Levon Aronian, Boris Gelfand, Radoslaw Wojtaszek and Ian Nepomniachtchi on his path to the title.

Abdusattorov was joined by his family in a ceremony at the headquarters of the National Olympic Commitee in Tashkent, attended by prominent people such as the Presidential advisor, several ministers in the government and the Deputy Prime Minister, according to Chess-News.

Abdusattorov was awarded a cash prize of around €20,300, and the Mard Uglon ("Brave Son") Presidential medal. The prize comes in addition to the $45,000 won in Warsaw, a huge amount for a teenager, especially in a country where the average annual salary is estimated at around €1,300.

Nodirbek Abdusattorov with prominent people in the Uzbek government during the ceremony | photo: National Olympic Committee Uzbekistan

The real prize must have been more significant: the 17-year-old was gifted the keys to his first home: a two-bedroom apartment

Speaking to Sputnik News, Abdusattorov said:

Today is a very important day for me. We, chess players, are very pleased with the attention they are giving us. I assure you, this victory is just the beginning.

Abdusattorov wasn't the only Uzbek grandmaster being celebrated in Tashkent. Also present at the ceremony were Jahongir Vakhidov and 16-year-old Javokhir Sindarov, who both received €8,200 each. They revealed they had been working together coaching Abdusattorov before the events.

Vakhidov said:

Some of our openings coincided. Many have already guessed, so we decided to reveal this secret — that Nodirbek and I worked together. If we told about this in advance, his opponents, for example, Carlsen, could study my games and prepare for the game against Nodirbek. It is not only about the opening, but also about the structure, type of thinking, positions.

After the official event, Abdusattorov was celebrated by hundreds of people in the streets of Tashkent.

Abdusattorov's triumph in Warsaw was his third playoff victory after also having won two tournaments in Spain just before Christmas: El Llobregat Open and Sunway Sitges Open.

It's not yet clear when chess fans will get the chance to see Abdusattorov play next, but the world no. 113 is expected to increase his 2641 rating considerably this year once invitations come in.

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