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Carlsen: 'Mystery of chess is, why me?'

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Carlsen: 'Mystery of chess is, why me?'
Magnus Karlsen (left) playing India's Anand Viswanathan at the world championships last year. Photo: Scanpix
21:52 CET+01:00
Norwegian chess phenomenon Magnus Carlsen has expressed bemusement at his own prodigious talents, telling an interviewer that for him, "one of the greatest mysteries of chess is: 'Why me?'".
 
The 23-year-old said in an interview with The Times that the the big question was, "why I do so well compared to others who have also put the time in and had some talent." 
 
"I just know that chess now at last comes more or less naturally to me, I understand it better than most people anyway," he explained. "But I don’t know what my intuition comes from apart from that it’s there.”
 
In the interview, Carlsen gave himself another decade at the top of the game, predicting that increasing experience and knowledge about the game will probably make up for any slowing up of his mind over that period. 
 
“Right now, I feel that I should be able to beat everyone when in a match as long as the current generation is there,” he said. “Being a great chess player or performing well at anything, it’s a combination of concentration, brains and experience, so it’s really about finding the right combination." 
 
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