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May 2, 2022 2:37 pm
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8-Year-Old Israeli Chess Player Displays Flag After Winning European Championship

avatar by Shiryn Ghermezian

Israeli chess prodigy Noam Sasson (center) holding an Israeli flag upon receiving his award at the 2022 European School Chess Championship. Photo: Screenshot.

An eight-year-old chess player from Israel won an international chess competition for children ages nine and under on Friday in Rhodes, Greece.

Chess prodigy Noam Sasson from Ganei Tikva took home the gold medal after winning seven out of nine rounds in his division at the 2022 European School Chess Championship, beating opponents from Turkey, Greece, Bulgaria, Ukraine, and other countries. More than 200 children participated in the competition, which had separate categories for players under seven, nine, 11, 13, 15, and 17 years old.

Sasson is a trainee of the “Chess4All” club in Savyon, Israel. The club’s director, Lior Eisenberg, spoke with Israeli media about Sasson’s performance in the championship, saying, “we watched the game live and it was really tense. After the eighth round there was a draw between him and the Turkish player. Only in the last round did Noam finish in a draw and the Turk lost, and thus he won first place in the championship.”

At the competition’s award ceremony, Sasson stood on a podium and held the Israeli flag as his national anthem, “Hatikvah,” played in the background.

Israeli Minister of Culture and Sports Hili Trooper congratulated Sasson after his win, saying, “we are proud of you.”

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