Ten-year-old chess champion Tani

ten-year-old chess champion Tani

Have you ever played chess? Watch this video to find out how Tani became a chess champion!

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Transcript

This is Tanitoluwa Adewumi. At ten years old, he's a chess wizard. 

Harry Potter: Checkmate!

Er, not that kind of wizard. 

There's no magic here, just serious skills and a love of the game. 

Tani: Probably, like, the way, like, the pieces move and, like, the beautiful aspect of the game, I would say.

Tani only started playing a few years ago, after he and his family were forced to leave their home in Nigeria and come to the US as refugees. They ended up without anywhere to live and had to stay at a homeless shelter in New York for a while. And that's when Tani first started making moves. 

Tani: Like, there was nothing else to do, so I was just like, 'Why not go for it?' Um, and that time was in the shelter, so it was just like, 'Why not go for it?'

And, boy, did he go for it! Tani now spends up to ten hours a day practising. He's won heaps of tournaments and now he's become a national chess master. For us non-chess champs, that means he's getting closer to being up there with the world's top junior players. 

Tani's amazing story has got a lot of attention. It's even been documented in a novel and a kids' book.

Tani: Over here is the kids. You cannot forget about the kids. Um, so this is Tani's new home over here. 

There's also a movie in the works after Paramount Pictures bought the rights to his story. How cool is that?!

But this chess master's ultimate dream is to up his rating and become the youngest ever grandmaster. Although Tani says what really counts the most is just doing your best and having fun.

Tani: Rating is just outside, but it's really inside of how you play the chess game. So, no underrating anybody, and just play your best.  

© ABC
 

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