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10-year-old making splash in the chess world

10-year-old making splash in the chess world



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A pint-sized chess player is proving he can run with the big dogs.

Kayden Troff, 10, of West Jordan, is the winner of the 2009 Utah Speed Chess crown. It's a big achievement because the competition has never been won by a child his age before, and it's actually for grown-ups.

10-year-old making splash in the chess world

Kayden is home-schooled and practices seven hours a day. He started playing when he was three years old. He says speed chess follows the same rules as regular chess but with a major twist. You play a game in less than five minutes, with two seconds to make your moves.

Kayden tried to show KSL his best moves, but our reporters had a hard time keeping up.

"I actually really like puzzle games, so, like, doing puzzles and stuff, and this is mostly just a mind game," he said.

In addition to being the youngest ever winner of Utah's State Speed Chess title, Kayden's no slouch with chess when there's no time limit. He placed second in the country among fifth graders last month at the national competition in Orlando.

Kayden hopes one day to become a grand master. He's studied under one, already has students of his own, and even helps his older brothers and another family run a chess camp in the winter and summer.

E-mail: bbruce@ksl.com

Becky Bruce

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