TWELVE-year-old Menash Fareed has become the youngest player to be placed among Fiji's top 10.
The development comes after the World Chess Federation (FIDE) granted him an official rating following his impressive performance at the World Youth Chess championship last week in the United Arab Emirates (UAE).
Fareed recorded victories against Daniel Roos of Sweden, Mahesh Khadka of Nepal and drew with Tinashe Mapfumo of Zimbabwe and Srinjay Mukhopadhyay of Kenya in the Under 14 category of the competition. And it was enough to move the youngster into Fiji's top 10, ahead of national U20 champion Keez Terubea.
This rounded off a successful year for the Yat Sen Primary School student who was a standout performer in the National Chess Championships last month where he managed three wins and one draw against the country's top players. National champion Calvin Prasad praised Fareed for his performance.
"Menash Fareed is a sensation in the local chess fraternity at the moment," he said.
Meanwhile, Menash's younger brother Meshan proved to be a powerhouse in the under-8 category at the tournament.
Fiji Chess Federation general secretary Goru Arvind said Meshan was a surprise package in the event.
Fiji's lone female representative to the event was ex-Olympiad rep Kabrina Terubea, who competed in the U16 category and won against Sanjana Deshpande of Kenya and drew with Zimbabwe's Cynthia Nyashanu.