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10-year old A Ra Harikrishnan, a student of Sethu Baskara School, Ambattur, Chennai delivered the first upset in the SDAT – RMK 4th Chennai Open 2012 International Grandmaster Chess Tournament defeating Woman Grandmaster and former National women champion Nisha Mohota, in the first round at Multipurpose Indoor Stadium, Periamet, Chennai here today.
Obtaining an advantage in an hard fought middle game, Harikrishnan led the game into an exchange up ending. The Chennai boy handled the double rook versus a rook and bishop ending deftly to outwit the more experienced Nisha Mohota. The four hour game from Harikrishnan (ELO 1755) showed the strength and depth of Tamil Nadu players in chess, as he overcame Nisha Mohota (ELO 2323).
The day offered a tough start for many seeds with International Masters Vijayalakshmi Subburaman, Suvrajit Saha and Vaibhav Suri conceding draws to their lower rated opponents viz., M Sabhareesh, U Ashwini and Shetye Siddhali respectively.
Top seed Grandmaster Aleksij Aleksandrov of Belarus had a relatively easy outing in the first board against Sarbajit Adhikari. Defending Champion and second seed Kravtsiv Martyn of Ukraine was fully stretched in his victory over S Vigneshwaran in the second board. Running into the last few minutes of his allotted time, Martyn found his way to win thanks to check mate threat through queen and bishop that fetched him an extra piece and the point.
Indian challenge led by Grandmasters Sethuraman, Deepan Chakkravarthy, Neelotpal Das and Dibyendu Barua took off smoothly with minimum resistance from lower seeds.
Earlier, the annual mega chess event of Chennai, the SDAT – RMK 4th Chennai Open 2012 International Grandmaster Chess Tournament saw a grand inauguration ceremony at the palatial Multipurpose Indoor Stadium, Chennai.
Shri JCD Prabhakar, MLA, President, All India Chess Federation made the first move against Chennai based Grandmaster S P Sethuraman, inaugurating the event.
Speaking on the occasion, Shri JCD Prabhakar said, “Tamil Nadu holds great chess tradition in organizing mega chess events, and the Central Council of All India Chess Federation will be writing to the Government to confer “Bharat Ratna” to World Champion Viswanathan Anand”. He also extolled the decision of bringing chess to all the Schools in Tamil Nadu by Honorable Chief Minister J Jayalalithaa.
Shri D V Sundar, Vice President, FIDE (World Chess Federation) welcomed the gathering, while Shri K Muralimohan, General Secretary, Tamil Nadu State Chess Association, delivered the vote of thanks.
297 players including 16 Grandmasters, 31 International Masters, 2 WGM’s, and 3 WIM’s from 15 countries viz., Belarus, Ukraine, Iceland, Bangladesh, China, Uzbekistan, Hungary, Brazil, Nepal, Botswana, Sri Lanka, Switzerland and the Philippines are participating in this tournament. This eleven round Swiss round runs till 12th January, 2012.
R R Vasudevan