Home Chess News Chess Finally Gets Recognition With Sportsmen Of Year Award (SOYA)

Chess Finally Gets Recognition With Sportsmen Of Year Award (SOYA)


Sharanya Iyengar nominated for SOYA award

After waiting for like infinity Chess in Kenya finally got a boost when Sharanya Iyengar was nominated for a prize during the grand SOYA awards.  Safaricom are the sponsors of the SOYA awards.

It is our great Kenyan legend Paul Tergat who came up with this idea many years ago. Paul Tergat was the 5 time winner of the World Cross Country Championship and two times Silver medalist at the Olympic Games
Over the years this event is dominated by the great Kenyan athletes.  However this year it was different when Sharanya name was nominated for her outstanding performance in chess.  Sharanya was part of the Kenya Ladies team to the recent Olympiad in Turkey.  The most outstanding point is that Sharanya is only 10 years old!!

With Olympic 3,000 m Steeplechase Gold Medalist
Ezekiel Kemboi at the SOYA awards
Posing with none other than David Rudisha
800 m Gold medalist at 2012 Olympics and
World Record Holder in 800m


Controversy mars the chess nomination

One would have expected that all chess players to be delighted with this news but no – in every group of people one must find the guys and gals who love to moan and groan.  The true “Wet Blankets” of society.  Never happy.

Complaints about her citizenship was the first thing to crop up.  Yes she has an Indian passport but she lives with her parents in Kenya and is for all purposes a Kenyan Resident.  We have never had a 10 year old kid who has generated so much interest in chess.  We should appreciate that important fact.  Anyway here are some photos of this talented girl.

Sharanya posing with World Title Contender Boris Gelfand in
Turkey.  Photo by Mehul Gohil


Posing with Harold Wanyama of Uganda who won
the 2012 Kenya Open and Sharanya won the Ladies section

Here is the link to the TV report – http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9W1dbvsWlZQ