IM Siddharth Ravichandran upset top seed GM Surya Sekhar Ganguly in the 7th round of the SREI International Grandmasters Chess Tournament at Kolkata Town Hall on Wednesday.
The 10-round Grandmasters’ chess tournament is organised by Dibyendu Barua Chess Academy in association with Allsport Foundation.
Meanwhile IM Jacek Stopa of Poland emerged as the sole leader with 6,0/7 points as he got the better of local GM Deep Sengupta in a sharp interesting encounter which arose from a Reti opening. Stopa won a piece in the middle game and later consolidated his extra material win in 33 moves.
GM Ivan Popov of Russia and GM Levan Pantsulaia of Georgia are in the joint 2nd spot with 5,5 points apiece.
After his unexpected reversal, the city-based Surya Sekhar now has 4 points and needs to win the remaining 3 rounds to finish near the top. Trying desperately to complicate the position in a King’s Indian Attack, Surya, for once, was clearly inferior after the opening as his pieces lacked co-ordination and mobility. Ravichandran sacrificed the rook for bishop on move 20 and thereafter played precisely to win in 60 moves.
National women’s champion WGM Mary Ann Gomes, too, had a bad day in office, as she succumbed to her first loss in the meet as she went down to GM Valeriy Neverov of Ukraine.
2nd seed, GM Ivan Popov effectively utilised his passed pawn on d7 to win a rook ending against Marat Dhzumaev of Uzbekistan which arose from a Scotch defence. On the top board, Levan defeated the overnight joint leader Samvel Ter Sahakyan of Armenia.
Veteran GM Praveen Thipsay got the better of GM Sinisa Drazic of Serbia to total 5 points.
Report by Rathinam Anantharam