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A cakewalk for Phani Kanuri of AP at 1st Tirupattur Rapid Rating Open 2023

by R Anantharam - 07/03/2023

46-year-old Phani Kanuri scored 7.5/8 to win 1st Tirupattur Rapid Rating Open 2023. The 11th seeded 1464 rated scored seven straight wins before splitting the point in the final round to become a clear champion. Five players scored 7/9. Out of them Vigneshwaran S and the top seed of the tournament Phoobalan P were placed second and third respectively according to tie-breaks. The top three finishers remained undefeated. This is Phani's first tournament victory since April 2018. The total prize fund of the tournament was ₹200000. The top three prizes were ₹15000, ₹13000 and ₹11000 along with a trophy each. The tournament was organized by Tirupattur District Chess Association. Unlike the usual time increment rapid rating tournaments, this event had a time delay! Photo: B Chandrasekaran / Tirupattur District Chess Association

A Unique Time Delay mode tournament

Phani Kanuri of AP was the outright winner of the 1st Tirupattur Rapid Rating Tournament securing 7.5 points. Five players tied for the second to sixth places and the tiebreaks favoured S Vigneshwaran of Tamil Nadu as the first runner-up and P Phoobalan of ICF as the second runner-up. The tournament carried total prize money of ₹200000, with a first prize of ₹15000 and a glittering trophy. The specialty of the eight round tournament is the use of time delay mode increment, because of which the organisers were able to finish the tournament as per schedule.

Phani Kanuri of AP receives the trophy from Prof. R Anantharam, IA | Photo: B Chandrasekaran / Tirupattur District Chess Association

Vigneshwaran had the best tiebreak among the five players who tied for the second place | Photo: B Chandrasekaran / Tirupattur District Chess Association

Phoobalan P of ICF finished third | Photo: B Chandrasekaran / Tirupattur District Chess Association

46-year-old Phani Kanuri had the energy and motivation to win the tournament ahead of ten other players, rated higher than him. The win over former under 10 national champion Syed Anwar Shazuli in the seventh round ensured him the title with seven consecutive victories and he had a formal draw with the second placed FIDE Instructor S Vigneshwaran. Both Phani and Vignesh did not lose a single game in the entire tournament.

Phani Kanuri scored 7.5/8 and gained 43.6 Elo rating points

Phani Kanuri's win over FM Syed Anwar was the turning point for him to win the tournament | Photo: B Chandrasekaran / Tirupattur District Chess Association

The tournament went on the expected lines until the fourth round, with the only exception being the draw by the runner-up Vigneshwaran against Ravada Karthikeshava of Tamil Nadu. In the fifth round, FM Gunasekaran K of ICF, a former Tamil Nadu state champion was brought down to earth by Kavin Vijayakumar of TN. Lower rated A Yuvanesh of Karnataka held ninth seeded KV Theju of TN.


Kavin continued his good performance by holding the top seed P Phoobalan of ICF to a draw in the sixth round. FIDE Masters Syed Anwar and M Vinoth Kumar of TN shared the lead with Phani Kanuri each having full six points. Phani emerged sole leader by beating Syed in the crucial seventh round, Vignesh and Phoobalan breathing at his neck. Vignesh Stopped the giant killing act of Kavin in the seventh round and Phoobalan put paid to the aspirations of FM Vinoth Kumar.

K Gunasekaran (at the back) of ICF secured the fourth position, In the front, Phoobalan plays against tenth placed C Rubesh | Photo: B Chandrasekaran / Tirupattur District Chess Association

Dhanush Raghav of TN also scored seven points to get the fifth place | Photo: B Chandrasekaran / Tirupattur District Chess Association

FM Vinoth Kumar of Chennai received the sixth place | Photo: B Chandrasekaran / Tirupattur District Chess Association

In the final round, Phani drew with Vignesh to claim the title, as the friends and foes of the eighth round Phoobalan and Syed Anwar also drew their encounter.

FM Syed Anwar Shazuli, a former under 10 national champion could not find the rhythm and secured the seventh place | Photo: B Chandrasekaran / Tirupattur District Chess Association

Kavin Vijayakumar had good results against higher rated players to reach the eighth place | Photo: B Chandrasekaran / Tirupattur District Chess Association

Sudharsan Krishnan of Denmark marred his chances to finish in the top bracket because of his final round loss to Pavana Sai Pravareesh of Karnataka | Photo: B Chandrasekaran / Tirupattur District Chess Association

Yelagiri Hills is one of the beautiful hill stations of Tamil Nadu which can be reached by a winding ghat road from Tirupattur, that has 14 hairpin bends.

The hairpin bends en route Yelagiri Hills

Punganur lake is an artificial lake created in an area of 56.706 square metre. Boating on the waters of this lake can be an enchanting experience.

Punganur lake

The city also known as the sandalwood city of Tamil Nadu and it has second-largest godown for sandalwood in Asia. The Ambur biryani is the delicious and popular food in Tamil Nadu and the district is well known for leather industries.


A total of 301 players participated from various parts of the country and one from Denmark. The eight-round Swiss league Rating tournament took place on 19th February 2023. It was organized by Tirupattur District Chess Association at Sri Amrita Higher Secondary School, Tirupattur, Tamil Nadu. The time control of the tournament was 15 minutes + 5 seconds delay from move no.1.

Final standings

Rk.SNoNameTypsexFEDRtgIClub/CityPts. TB1  TB2  TB3  TB4  TB5 nwwew-weKrtg+/-
111Phani KanuriIND1464AP7,541,545,542,000765,53,322,182043,6
26Vigneshwaran SIND1775TN742,54740,2506655,48-0,4820-9,6
31Phoobalan P.IND2098ICF742,54639,5006655,34-0,3420-6,8
43FMGunasekaran K.IND2000ICF741,542,535,5007655,95-0,9520-19
57Dhanush Ragav N SIND1758TN740,542,535,5007655,21-0,2120-4,2
64FMVinoth Kumar M.IND1847TN7394134,0007654,700,30206
72FMSyed Anwar ShazuliIND2058ICF6,541,545,534,500664,55,23-0,7320-14,6
814Kavin VijayakumarU13IND1394TN6,5414433,500664,52,601,904076
918Subash AnandIND1386TN6,540,544,534,2506543,490,5100
1022Rubesh CIND1290TN-T6,53841,531,750664,53,700,804032
118Sri Sakthivel Murugan CIND1613PUD6,537,540,531,750653,54,68-1,1820-23,6
1234Pavana Sai PravareeshU10IND1187KAR6,5374029,750631,50,411,094043,6
1325Gowtham DIND1247TN-T6,5353829,750642,51,810,694027,6
1428Ravada KarthikesavaU14IND1228TN64042,529,5005532,240,764030,4
1512Gowrichander UIND1457TN639,543,531,0006644,31-0,3120-6,2
1619Harish GIND1329AP639,542,529,7505532,980,02200,4
1745Sam Yedidiah SU12IND1142TN6394330,5005420,531,474058,8
1823Mohana Surya VIND1255TN6394330,0006532,870,13405,2
1930Stuti PradeepF12wIND1208KAR63940,526,0006421,030,974038,8
209Theju K VIND1566TN638,542,529,5005644,76-0,7620-15,2


About the Author

Prof. Rathinam Anantharam is an A-grade international arbiter. Member of FIDE Arbiters’ Commission, Chairman of Titles Commission in All India Chess Federation, Vice President of Tamil Nadu State Chess Association, Chief Arbiter for six world championships, many Asian, International and National Championships.


The report was edited by Shahid Ahmed

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