A Nigerian refugee child in United States of America, Tanitoluwa Adewumi has brushed aside all daunting odds to emerge winner of a major chess competition in God’s Own Country.
Adewumi (aka Tani), a homeless third grader and kindergarten player, pulled off a huge shock by emerging winner in his category at the 2019 New York State Chess Championship.
Adewumi, the new chess champion for kindergarten third grade, went undefeated at the state contest against many children from elite private schools, who enjoyed the largess of personal chess tutors.
Ironically, he only learned chess a bit more than a year ago, but his play soared in an accelerated wave, such that he has now won seven trophies and keeps them close to his bed in a homeless kids’ abode.
The new champs’ father, Kayode Adewumi, said the family fled northern Nigeria in 2017, fearing attacks by Boko Haram terrorists on them and other Christians.
The Adewsumis took Tani and his older brother to New York City just over a year ago, and a pastor helped them into a homeless shelter.
Tani began attending the local elementary school, which has a part-time chess teacher who taught the child’s class how to play the game, while his mother, Oluwatoyin Adewumi allowed him to join the chess club.
However, Mrs. Adewumi, who wants to master American English, had to mail the club and confess that she could not pay fees for the programme because the family was living in a shelter
She added: “He is interested in the chess programme, which he will like to be participating in;” while Tani declared: “I want to be the youngest grand-master.”