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Aaryan Varshney and Navya Tayal Crowned Champions of IIFL Wealth Delhi Qualifiers

by Paras Gudka - 13/12/2017

The IIFL Wealth  Juniors is just around the corner. But before the tournament kicks off on the 30th of this month, its organizers decided to ensure that players from all corners of the country got an opportunity to showcase their talent at this world-class event. To this end, eight regional qualifiers are being held in several parts of the country. The title winners not only get free entry plus accommodation into the tournament but also a unique opportunity to interact with the chess legend Vishy Anand. In its first regional qualifier that concluded on December 3 in Delhi, Aryan Varshney and Navya Tayal won the title prizes in the boys' and the girls' category respectively and confirmed their tickets to Mumbai. We have an illustrated report with pictures and games.

The first ever qualifying tournament for the IIFL Wealth Mumbai International Junior (U13) Chess Tournament came to a successful close on Sunday, 3rd December at Arya Samaj Mandir, New Delhi. Aaryan Varshney and Navya Tayal were crowned winners of the Open and Girls sections respectively.

Winners, Navya Tayal (left) and Aryan Varshney (right) with Tournament Organiser FI Praful Zaveri (centre). | Photo: Mukesh Bhosale 

Aaryan, a student of Doon Public School, managed to remain undefeated throughout the 9 gruelling rounds to finish clear first with a score of 8.0/9. His two draws came against Adarsh Tripathi in Round 5 and Aryan Ranjan in Round 8. For this report, Aryan has been kind enough to annotate his seventh round game against Saksham Rautela, the second place winner of the tournament.

Joining him on the winners’ podium were Saksham Rautela (second place) and Adarsh Tripathi (third place) both of whom finished tied with 7.5 points, the former edging out the latter with a better tiebreak score.


The Girls’ section also saw a tie for first place with both Navya Tayal and Shivika Rohilla finishing with 8.0/9. Navya was eventually declared the winner due to better tiebreak score. She had beaten Shivika in Round 7. Bhushita Ahuja finished third with 7 points despite having defeated the eventual champion in Round 5.

Shivika Rohilla receiving her second place trophy from Tania Sachdev | Photo: Mukesh Bhosale

A point behind Navya and Shivika, Bhushita Ahuja finished third scoring 7.0/9 | Photo: Mukesh Bhosale

The 9-round tournament saw a total of 157 players participating (111 in Open and 46 in Girls) of which 66 had FIDE standard ratings (56 in Open and 10 in Girls). Played over 3 days, the event was conducted by ChessMine—Indian Chess School’s local partner in New Delhi—using a time control of 60 minutes with 30 seconds increment per move.

All prize winners of the IIFL Wealth Delhi Qualifiers | Photo: Mukesh Bhosale

Speaking to ChessBase India about the need for qualifying events spread across the country for the third edition of the main tournament, Chief Organiser and founder of Indian Chess School FI Praful Zaveri explained, “With the inaugural Delhi event, we have taken our first step in making IIFL Wealth Chess a pan India event. I am confident that it will provide a unique platform for kids to showcase their talents and make their presence felt at international chess level”.

Games from the tournament were broadcasted live on the official website of IIFL Chess and on FollowChess | Photo: Mukesh Bhosale

Overseeing the team of arbiters was IA Amit Sharma, ably assisted by FA Guru Dayal and FA Shivakant Mishra while the live broadcast team consisted of SNA Sandesh Naik, Vivek Mahajan and Chetan Bhosale. Live games were broadcasted on the official website at and on FollowChess.


Apart from offering free entry, accommodation, meals and a chance to play against GM Viswanathan Anand in a simul to both winners at the main event in Mumbai later in the month, the organisers went all out to motivate other top performing players with prizes for the top 10 in each section and prizes for the top 3 in the following age categories in both sections: Under 7, Under 8, Under 9 and Under 10. Getting to share stage space with local chess superstar IM and WGM Tania Sachdev at the closing ceremony gave them further impetus to work hard in the future.

Prize winners in each category were awarded medals. | Photo: Mukesh Bhosale
Team prizes were also awarded to Delhi Public School Sector 45 Gurugram and Modern School, Vasant Vihar, New Delhi based on performances of their top 4 players. | Photo: Mukesh Bhosale

Tournament Director IM Vishal Sareen had this to add, “This was indeed a rare opportunity for the kids… To play with Anand is everyone’s dream and I am glad that two kids of Delhi will have a chance to live their dream. All the players truly enjoyed the tournament and in the end, there was another bonanza as Praful bhai declared that all participants will get Rs. 1000/- off on entering the main event!”

IM Vishal Sareen | Photo: Mukesh Bhosale

The full list of prize winners is as follows:

Open Section:

Rk.SNoNameTypsexFEDRtgPts. TB1  TB2  TB3  TB4  TB5 
11Aaryan VarshneyU13IND20268,00,051,556,557,0
23Saksham RautelaU13IND19037,51,052,557,547,0
34Adarsh TripathiU13IND17637,50,050,554,547,0
42Alok SinhaU13IND19057,00,050,554,556,0
57Aryan RanjanU13IND16186,50,051,055,045,0
613Arjun GuptaU13IND15196,50,048,052,046,0
710Aviral JaiswalU13IND16016,50,047,552,055,0
821Sparsh BishtU08IND13646,50,046,048,556,0
912Harshiel SehgalU10IND15786,00,047,551,555,0
108AIMBhavik AhujaU10IND16116,00,047,551,054,0

Girls Section:

Rk.SNoNameTypsexFEDRtgClub/CityPts. TB1  TB2  TB3  TB4  TB5 
11Navya TayalU13wIND1376DELHI PUBLIC SCHOOL SEC 45 GURUGRAM8,01,048,552,548,0
23Shivika RohillaU10wIND1315ST. MARY'S SCHOOL8,00,049,553,548,0
32Bhushita AhujaU13wIND1345THE SHRIRAM SCHOOL MAULSARI7,00,049,053,556,0
46Stuti AishwaryU09wIND1115PRESIDIUM SCHOOL ASHOK VIHAR6,50,048,051,546,0
54Ishvi AggarwalU13wIND1227DELHI PUBLIC SCHOOL SEC 45 GURUGRAM6,50,045,549,556,0
640Saanvi SinghU13wIND0SADHU VASWANI INTERNATIONAL SCHOOL6,02,048,052,046,0
713Aggarwal TashnaU07wIND0SHIVNADAR SCHOOL NOIDA6,00,040,543,546,0
810Advika SinghU09wIND1024THE SHRIRAM SCHOOL ARAVALI6,00,039,541,056,0
95Vidhi BhartiyaU13wIND1211MODERN SCHOOL VASANT VIHAR5,50,049,553,545,0
107Kamya GuptaU13wIND1083SARDAR PATEL VIDYALAYA5,50,044,547,055,0

Category Prize Winners:

Under-07 Open: 1. Sadbhav Rautela 2. Rosh Jain 3. Reyansh Wadhwa

Under-08 Open: 1. Vishvas Chopra 2. Aditya Balaji 3. Aarav Sinha

Under-09 Open: 1. Aashman Gupta 2. Sahib Singh 3. Abeer Manchanda

Under-10 Open : 1. Garv Rai 2. Bhanu Pratap Singh 3. Krunal Patel

Under-07 Girls : 1. Gaayantika Chander 2. Wadhwani Aisha 3. Samaira Jain

Under-08 Girls : 1. Aanya Agrawal 2. Dishita Negi 3. Aarshiya

Under-09 Girls : 1. Varnika Vashisht 2. Akshika Mital 3. Riddhi Maheshwari

Under-10 Girls : 1. Nandini Tewari 2. Arunima Sethi 3. Priyani Gupta

About the author:

Paras Gudka is a 33 year-old aspiring IM from Nairobi, Kenya who has dabbled in almost every aspect of chess: from competitive play, event organisation, club administration, photography and writing to product sales, arbitration, training, compèring and everything in between. After having made his mark in Kenya as one of the best organisers and arbiters, he is now working on becoming a top player. To follow along on his journey, visit his website.

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