The battle is certainly hotting up as the Thailand Open 2013 – 13th Bangkok Chess Club Open being played from 14-21 April at the Dusit Thani Pattaya – moves into and past the half way mark.
Yesterday saw many contenders express frustration at not getting the full point while others were clearly adopting a strategy of sorts!
India’s Saptarshi Roy has so far been the revelation of the tournament and the man very much in form and today he met Filipino GM Mark Paragua who has quietly but confidently amassed the same score. The battle between the two surprise leaders ended with draw where the Indian IM was always pushing.
Australia’s No. 1, Zhao Zong-Yuan, was also on four points without doing too much and so faced his first real challenge in third seeded and former champion Jan Gustafsson who floated up but a sharp opening quickly fizzled to a draw.
There were also many exciting encounters amongst the three and a half pointers, Levente Vajda outplaying John Paul Gomez, Komeru Humpy unable to take advantage of a lapse of concentration by Darwin Laylo, Ralf Akesson convincing over Oliver Barbosa, Wang Chen drawing Sune Berg Hansen, and Rogelio Antonio just too strong for Wan Yunguo.
So when the dust had cleared, the three leaders Zhao Zong-Yuan, Mark Paragua and Saptarshi Roy still lead with 4.5 but are now joined by Levente Vajda, Rogelio Antonio and Ralf Akesson to make it a six way tie at the top.
In the chasing pack, on 4/5 are Jan Gustafsson, Koneru Humpy, Darwin Laylo, Attila Czebe, Gerhard Schebler, Manual Bijaoui, M.S.Thejkumar, Nelson Villanueva, Irine Kharisma Sukandar, Ma Zhonghan and Nouri Hamed.
News and photo gallery by Peter Long (click on thumbnail for full size)