Dubai, Oct 4: President of Asian Chess Federation (ACF) Shaikh Sultan Bin Khalifa Bin Shakhboot Al Nahyan has lauded Indian Grandmaster Viswanathan Anand's for becoming the World Champion and termed his triumph as a 'big boost' for the game in the continent.
''The victory of Anand is a big boost for the game in Asia. We are really happy and pleased with the player's achievement,'' Shaikh Sultan said in Abu Dhabi yesterday.
Anand, currently the highest ranked Grandmaster in the World, defeated Hungary Grandmaster Peter Leko in the decisive tie of the World Championship title at Mexico recently.
''I talked to Anand on phone as soon as he finished his final match and congratulated him on his victory.
''I also called the President of All India Chess Association (AICF), N Srinivasan and expressed our pleasure and happiness in the ACF for the international achievement,'' Shaikh Sultan, who is also the President of Al Ain Chess Club, said.
''We, the members of the ACF, are proud that Anand has won the World Championship for men following the victory of Chinese lady Xu Yuhua who won the women's World Championship only months ago,'' he added.
He had also sent the ACF General Secretary Hosham Al Taher Al Amin to New Delhi to take part in Anand's reception on behalf of the Asian federation, who is slated to arrive tomorrow.
Meanwhile, the ACF General Secretary also congratulated Anand on his emphatic victory and said by winning both the World Championship in both men and women category, the continent has proved that it is the powerhouse of world chess.
''It is a great achievement and it is also an indication that Asia became the powerhouse of the world's chess game winning both titles for the men and women.
''I am happy and honoured to be with the top Indian officials who will meet Anand at the airport upon his arrival,'' Al Taher said.