After struggling to make his way beyond Indian shores unlike some of his contemporaries, Surya Sekhar Ganguly doesn't rate his triumph in the Asian Continental Championship as a big step ahead. “It's yet to come,” he says.
Ganguly returned to his city on Tuesday morning and stayed busy for the rest of the day responding to calls, mostly congratulatory. The 26-year-old didn't sound as elated while speaking to HT, maintaining that he has just about started coming of age.
“I'm yet to make the jump, as you mean by saying that I was not doing much of note outside the country. There were problems which kept me from trying my luck abroad. It's just a start, let's see what happens afterwards.”
The record-breaking six-time successive national champion who assisted Viswanathan Anand in his historic win over Vladimir Kramnik in the world championship last year was candid enough however to admit this was the biggest moment of his life.
“Being a second to Anand was huge and winning the national title so many times was big but at the end of the day, I'm a player. My success will have to be judged by what I achieve. That way, this is the strongest tournament that I have won in my life.”
Ganguly insisted that being approached by Anand was massive but the gravity of his success in the Philippines outshines all his previous deeds. “My best result no doubt. Not just because of the title, I was very satisfied with the way I played.”
Elaborating, he said that sometimes his “quality” of game got overlooked because of the “mistakes” others made in the past when he was winning. “This time, my game was good. It won't be highlighted in my rating, but I know I am playing better.”
Ganguly, who expects to gain 15 Elo rating points from his current position at 2625, felt his stint under athletics coach Kuntal Roy at the SAI Eastern Centre before the Asian meet did him a world of good.