We have already seen that Nigel Short can still go and have fantastic games against strong opponents. However, it would be naive to think he is 100% chess wise, as he just recovered from COVID less than two weeks ago. A slight misstep in the early part of the game gave his 14-year-old opponent, Lorenzo Candian, a decisive advantage. Unfortunately it was not his day as his phone went off, and he was immediately handed a loss in Round 2 of Vergani Cup January 2022. 18 players including three Indians - GM M Lalit Rohit, IM Bharath Subramaniyam H and IM Pranesh M are at 2.0/2 each. Round 3 starts tonight at 7:30 p.m. IST. Photo: Rupali Mullick
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Adamas University won both Men and Women section of East Zone Inter University championships on their debut. In the Men's section, four teams - Adamas, University of Calcutta, L N Mithila University, Darbhanga and Jadavpur University, finished with the same score 10.0/12. They were placed first to fourth on tie-breaks. All four teams advanced to the Nationals. The Women's section was dominated by Adamas scoring 100%, 12.0/12, followed by University of Calcutta 10.0/12, Shahid Nand Kumar Patel University 8.0/12 and Manipur University 7.0/12. They secured second to fourth place respectively and qualified for the National University championships which will take place once the remaining Zonal Inter-University championships conclude. Photo: Adamas University
Untitled Ojas Kulkarni had a great start at Vergani Cup January 2022. He drew with the former World Championship Challenger and English legend, GM Nigel Short in the first round. He played solid throughout the game and made sure he did not commit any significant mistake. Anton Korobov, Hans Niemann, M Amin Tabatabaei and Zdenko Kozul started their tournament with a win in Round 1. Total 124 players including 22 GMs, 16 IMs, 4 WGMs and 2 WIMs are participating from 31 countries across the world. 26 Indians are taking part in this event, second-highest contingent after the host nation Italy which has 27 players. Round 2 starts tonight at 7:30 p.m. IST. Photo: Rupali Mullick
India no.2 Vidit Gujrathi and currently India no.4 Nihal Sarin, both of them scored 13.0/21 at World Blitz 2021. They were placed 18th and 19th according to tie-breaks. However, it was Arjun Erigaisi who was India no.1 in Blitz, went to the tournament with a lot of expectations on his shoulder and he did not disappoint. He might have scored 12.5/21 and secured 24th place, if you take a look at the opponents he faced and how he fared, that will give you a real picture of what he went through. Gukesh finished 32nd place 12.5/21. In the Open section, India got three places in top 30 and four in top 50, which is quite impressive. Among the women, GM Koneru Humpy secured fifth place and IM Vaishali R was placed 14th. Photo: Anna Shtourman/FIDE
GM Diptayan Ghosh brought IM Sammed Jaykumar Shete's fantastic momentum to a screeching halt in the final round to win 2nd Dombivli Kalyan Rapid Rating Open. Sammed was 8.0/8 heading into the final round, Diptayan was at 7.5/8. A last round win allowed Diptayan to become clear champion. Four players - IM Sammed Jaykumar Shete, IM Himal Gusain, FM Suyog Wagh and Aniruddha Potawad scored 8.0/9. They were placed second to fifth respectively according to tie-breaks. Diptayan won ₹30000 cash, Sammed got ₹20000 and Himal ₹15000. All three of them won a trophy each. Total cash prize ₹200000 and 95 trophies were given as prizes. Check out Diptayan's analysus of his final round win.
Iniyan P was on the verge of winning 10th Lorca City Open. Despite being in the sole lead 7.0/8, he was in a must-win situation against Karen Grigoryan (ARM) in the final round. A draw would not have been enough as the eventual winner, Alexandr Fier (BRA) 7.5/9, had better tie-breaks. Unfortunately for Iniyan, he could not win the last round and had to settle for third place. Karen finished second 7.5/9. Karthik Venkataraman had the same score as Iniyan, he secured fourth position according to the tie-breaks. IM Srijit Paul is the only other Indian to finish in the top ten at seventh place. WIM Priyanka Nutakki was the best female player 5.5/9. Photo: Club Ajedrez Lorca
GM D Gukesh played brilliantly at the World Rapid 2021. Despite a slow start 2.0/4, Gukesh bounced back strong and finished at ninth place scoring an impressive 9.0/13 and became the top performer among Indians at the event. He defeated Gelfand, Jobava and was almost on the verge of defeating the eventual champion Abdusattorov. India's latest GM Mitrabha on the other hand made a stellar debut at the event. He scored 8.5/13 to secure 15th place. Both of them finished ahead of Dubov, Vachier-Lagrave, Firouzja, Gelfand, Korobov, Giri and Artemiev. They are the only two Indians to finish in top 30. IM Vaishali R was impressive in her debut at the World Rapid Women 2021 among the Indian women. Photo: Anna Shtourman/FIDE
IM Bharath Subramaniyam H beat WGM Mary Ann Gomes in the final round to score an unbeaten 7.5/9 to win 6th Vergani Cup December 2021. GM Arjun Kalyan was leading the tournament since Round 5. A last round draw against WGM Nandhidhaa P V, cost Arjun the championship. He had to settle for the second place 7.0/9. IM Moksh Amit Doshi, Nandhidhaa and Mary scored 6.0/9 each. They were placed fifth to seventh respectively accoding to the tie-breaks. Bharath earned €700 and Arjun €500 as their respective prizes. Total prize fund was €3000. 13-year-old Arhan Chethan Anand gained a massive 148.8 Elo rating points. Photo: Rupali Mullick
Avinash Ramesh increases 491 Elo points in six months, recovers from COVID-19 and becomes India's latest IM01/01/2022 -
17-year-old Avinash Ramesh started the year 2021 with a rating 1933. After his tenth standard board exams got over, he devoted 10-12 hours per day on chess which instilled belief in his parents to take him for tournaments in Italy, Serbia and Hungary. After scoring his first IM-norm and crossing 2400, he was struck with the deadly COVID-19 virus. He recovered from it and scored the remaining two IM-norms in two consecutive events in just 20 days. Avinash's willpower and dedication for chess allowed him to make a fierce comeback and become India's latest International Master on 23rd December 2021. Check out Avinash's not-so-easy road towards IM title with inputs from his mother Vijayalakshmi Ramesh.
The sixth season of IIFL Wealth Mumbai International Open and Junior (Under-13) Chess Tournament started yesterday at the World Trade Center. The gala tournament of Mumbai is back after skipping the last year due to Covid-19 pandemic. The total prize fund of the tournament is ₹ 5 lacs, ₹2.5 lacs each in Open and Junior section. The tournament director IO FA FT Praful Zaveri whose brainchild is this event, decided to take baby steps and instead of going for five-six events and make it a chess festival like we have seen in previous editions, he decided to go for Open and Under-13 event only. Photo: Praful Zaveri
Maxime Vachier-Lagrave ended Levon Aronian's fantastic momentum in Round 17 and tied three-way for the first place along with Jan-Krzyzstof Duda (POL) and fellow countryman, Alireza Firouzja. As per tournament regulations, only top two according to the tie-break had to play the Playoffs. MVL beat Duda 2-1 in the Playoffs to win his first world title, World Blitz 2021. Previous day leader, 17-year-old IM Bibisara Assaubayeva continued her dominance as she won the World Blitz Women 2021 with a round to spare and finished 1.5 points ahead of the competition. The cash prize for top three were US$ 60000, 50000 and 40000 in Rapid and Blitz event each respectively. There will be separate overviews of Indian performances in both Rapid and Blitz event. Photo: Lennart Ootes/FIDE
The "Special" in the new ChessBase Magazine #205 is dedicated to Robert Huebner, the best German player since Emanuel Lasker: an exclusive collection of 16 games, with analyses by Michal Krasenkow, Romain Edouard, Viktor Moskalenko, and others. And there's the best of the FIDE Grand Swiss 2021: tournament winner Alireza Firouzja annotates his victory against Nijat Abasov, and Grigoriy Oparin, Yu Yangyi, Alexandr Predke, Samuel Sevian, Nikita Vitiugov, and others annotate their best games. In a video Markus Ragger reveals a brand-new update in the Gruenfeld Defence with 5.Bd2. Plus 11 opening articles ("Surprise in the London System: 6...e5!", "Benko Gambit with open centre: 5.b6 e6!?", "News in the French Tarrasch: 8...g5" ), as well as training columns on tactics, strategy and endgame. Photo: ChessBase
Arjun Erigaisi and Vaishali R are the Indian players who had a fantastic first day in World Blitz 2021 Open and Women's section respectively. While Arjun scored a uber impressive 8.5/12, Vaishali was no less 7.5/9. She is just a half point behind the leader IM Bibisara Assaubayeva (KAZ). Humpy is also in the title fray 7.0/9. She will face the newly crowned World Women's Rapid 2021 winner, Kosteniuk in the next round. Magnus has already lost three games. The last time he lost three or more games at World Blitz was back in 2015 which Grischuk won. Abhimanyu Puranik is so far the only person who has beaten the sole leader, Levon Aronian 10.0/12. Who do you think will win World Blitz 2021 in Open and Women's section? Final day of World Blitz 2021 starts today at 6:30 p.m. IST. Photo: Anna Shtourman/FIDE
Nodirbek Abdusattorov created history by beating Carlsen, Aronian, Caruana, Wojtaszek and becoming the youngest ever World Rapid Champion in the history of chess at the age of 17 years. Ian Nepomniachtchi, who lost the playoff blitz match against Abdusattorov, took home the silver medal. Magnus Carlsen won the bronze. In the women's section Alexandra Kosteniuk dominated from the start and became the Champion with 9.0/11. Second place went to Kazakh player Bibisara Assaubayeva and third was taken by Valentina Gunina.
IM Aronyak Ghosh scored an unbeaten 8.5/9 to finish a full point ahead of the competition and win 3rd SDDM Cup 2021. Four players - Pradip Ghosh, IM Koustav Chatterjee, Rupankar Nath and Alekhya Mukhopadhyay scored 7.5/9 each. They were placed second to fourth according to tie-breaks. It is one of the few tournaments which is organized by a Chess Division of a Municipality, South Dum Dum to be exact. Total prize fund of the event was ₹200000 with entry being only ₹600. The objective of the event is for maximum chess players to take part and they managed to achieve as 253 players took part in it. Check out few games of Aronyak which was shared with us. Photo: Shahid Ahmed