Saina Salonika of Odisha has become the Number 1 ranked National and Asian player in her age group Under 13 and also in her upper age group Under 14 category recently.
She was awarded the Women’s FIDE Master (WFM) title by the world chess governing body FIDE on Tuesday. In a mail to the All India Chess Federation (AICF), FIDE informed about conferring the title to Saina.
Currently with an ELO Rating of 2093 points, Saina Salonika is the No 3 woman player of the State after IM Padmini Raut and WGM Kiran Manisha Mohanty.
A visibly elated Saina said that she is very happy. “I am delighted,” stated that 12-year-old. “Now I am targetting the Women’s International Master (WIM) title. I know that I will have to work very hard for it, but I am prepared to grind it out,” she added.
Saina Salonika has earlier become World Champion in the U-10 Girl category in 2013 in Dubai. She also got Gold Medal in Commonwealth Chess Championship in her age group in 2012. Besides being National Champion in her age group Saina has got ten medals in International championships.
In the year 2012, she was the youngest Odia player to get the International title of Woman Candidate Master WCM.
Daughter of Ganeswar Jena and Babita Jena Saina hails from Sulana village of Hatadihi block in Keonjhar District and now continuing her study in the Grade VIII class of KIIT International School, Bhubaneswar.
Saina Salonika will represent India in the World Youth Chess Championship in Russia this month.