Former world no.1 and chess legend Viswanathan Anand has said that he is greatly inspired by Roger Federer. The chess Grandmaster admitted that he felt uneasy when people referred to him as ‘world champion’.
However, once he won the World rapid chess title in December, he grew more comfortable. “I am a current champion at something now, so it’s ok,” Anand said. It is also true for champions in all sports that when the going gets tough, they look to each other for inspiration.
Anand’s title success took its own sweet time as it was his first since losing the classical championship to Magnus Carlsen in 2013. It seems that even in chess, retirement questions are posed when age comes into play.
However, Anand is proving that age is just a number and isn’t showing any signs of slowing down. He confessed that Swiss tennis ace Roger Federer and his remarkable resurgence at the age of 36 inspired him. Just like Anand, Federer too, is winning Grand Slams and beating opponents who are younger than him.
“Yes. When you see someone else do it, you feel more relaxed about trying it yourself. I am convinced the reason you stop playing well is not age but because you have stopped adapting. So when someone is doing well you try to learn from that. You do look for examples from other sports that can take you to the right direction,” Anand said.
The 48-year old was impressed by the two titles that he won last year. He was referring to the 2017 Australian Open and Wimbledon. He believes that when players experience remarkable things, it is easy to forget unremarkable things.
He said, “I think stylistically the way Federer has adapted is the key. For tennis, it is the same as for chess players. In chess it is very hard to do something that is stylistically different. It’s difficult for a technical player to be a tactical one and vice versa.