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The fight for 16 Commonwealth Golds!

by Sagar Shah - 07/07/2019

The Commonwealth Championships are unique because along with the open event, you have 14 age category events simultaneously going on. When 7th of July draws to an end, we would have 16 different Commonwealth Champions from under-8 to under-20 and open section. In this report we have begun with our focus on the age category events where winners have already been decided in some sections, while in some the last round will see full fledged fights. In the open, Abhijeet Gupta has been joined by two Indian youngsters at the top, Aravindh Chithambaram and S.L. Narayanan. In this report you get some nice pictures, analysis, videos and much more. IM Sagar Shah reports from the venue.

Their feet are bare, they move without fear, the lines of experience are yet to be formed, but they are already a force to reckon with! They are future of Indian chess! | Photo: Sagar Shah

Under-8 girls

It is almost certain that Aishani Pathak will win the gold. She has a 100% score, she is one point ahead of her rivals and she has the best tiebreak! | Photo: Sagar Shah

Ranking after round 6

Rk.SNoNameFEDRtgPts. TB1  TB2  TB3 
12Aishani PathakIND12136,00,022,525,5
25Daksha RudraIND11235,00,020,523,0
38Yatee KothariIND10805,00,020,522,5
46Aggarwal TashnaIND11014,50,021,523,5
54Lakshana SubramanianIND11554,50,019,520,0
618Arhashirsha BiswasIND04,50,016,018,0
77Kolagatla Alana MeenakshiIND10944,00,021,023,5
838Sequeira JennicaIND04,00,020,020,5
925Mahadev Rushita HajuIND04,00,019,522,0
103Prisha KesarwaniIND12034,00,019,521,5

Under-8 Open

Vivaan Saraogi is leading the tournament with 5.0/6, but he has others who are on the same score | Photo: Sagar Shah

Local lad Rosh Jain is on 5.0/6 | Photo: Sagar Shah

Chinmay Kowshik drew with Vivaan and is also on 5.0/6 | Photo: Sagar Shah

After a fourth round loss to Ethan Vaz, former under-7 national champion Amogh Bisht is back in the reckoning and is on 5.0/6

Rosh Jain takes on Chinmay Kowshik, while Vivaan is up against Amogh Bisht. It's going to be a fight to the finish in the under-8 open section in the final round.

Standings after round 6

Rk.SNoNameFEDRtgPts. TB1  TB2  TB3 
12Vivaan Vijay SaraogiIND14645,00,021,524,0
21Rosh JainIND15105,00,018,020,5
34Chinmay KowshikIND13855,00,018,020,5
46Amogh BishtIND13555,00,017,520,5
55Jaivardhan RajIND13844,50,020,020,5
68Adharsh KIND12834,50,017,019,0
721Rudradaman MertiaIND10334,50,016,518,5
83Ethan VazIND14414,00,022,025,0
913Aman George ThomasIND11094,00,021,024,5
1010Ayushman MohantyIND12484,00,020,022,0

Under-10 girls

Hiya Panchal managed to beat the sole leader Shefali AN and moved to 5.0/6 | Photo: Sagar Shah

Highly focussed Sneha Halder is on 5.0/6 | Photo: Sagar Shah

Shriyana Mallya, last year's under-8 Commonwealth Champion, would like to now win the under-10 gold

Standings after round 6

Rk.SNoNameFEDRtgPts. TB1  TB2  TB3 
15WCMShriyana S MallyaIND13165,00,020,022,5
21Sneha HalderIND14745,00,019,021,0
37Panchal HiyaIND12955,00,018,021,5
413Srishanthi GIND12404,50,021,023,5
54WCMShefali A NIND13374,50,021,022,0
611Aswinika Mani RIND12544,50,015,517,0
73Arshiya DasIND13454,00,020,523,5
844Shanjula SenthilIND04,00,020,023,0
99Sachi JainIND12714,00,017,518,5
106Pournami SIND13143,50,020,523,5

Open under - 10

The favourite in the under-10 section was Ilamparthi AR. The youngster has been dominating his age category nationals and with a rating of 2036 is already a very talented youngster. However, he was unable to get the better of Yash Bharadia in round 6 and Yash is now close to the gold medal with 5.5/6.

Yash Bharadia is the sole leader with 5.5/6 | Photo: Sagar Shah

Standings after round 6

Rk.SNoNameFEDRtgPts. TB1  TB2  TB3 
12Bharadia YashIND19425,50,022,024,0
21Ilamparthi A RIND20365,00,021,023,0
39Daaevik WadhawanIND16035,00,020,022,0
43CMManon Reja NeerBAN18505,00,019,522,5
57Md ImranIND16595,00,017,520,0
68Aakash GIND16224,50,019,020,5
733Vedant MistryIND12864,50,018,519,5
86Daakshin ArunIND16674,50,016,518,5
919Suhaas AIND14704,50,015,517,5
1037Rounaiv RanaIND12644,00,021,024,5

Under-12 girls

Riddhi Patel from Gujarat is the sole leader with 5.5/6 | Photo: Sagar Shah

Standings after round 6

Rk.SNoNameFEDRtgPts. TB1  TB2  TB3 
110WCMPatel Riddhi RIND14045,50,017,018,5
27Tejaswini GIND14515,00,015,017,0
35Rout YashitaIND14534,51,021,023,0
414Mythri MaddisettyIND13804,50,017,018,0
516Jahnavi Sri Lalita MareddyIND13704,00,018,020,0
620Tejasvee Naresh SinghIND11934,00,016,519,0
713Sai Mahati AIND13944,00,015,517,5
88Tejaswi RIND14263,50,022,024,5
912Cera DagariaIND13953,50,021,023,5
1017Sindhusree KIND13703,50,019,522,0

Under-12 Open

Youngster from Punjab Tanmay Jain is well and truly on course for his first Commonwealth title. Tanmay has a one point lead over the field and needs just a draw to clinch the title. | Photo: Sagar Shah

Rankings after round 6

Rk.SNoNameFEDRtgPts. TB1  TB2  TB3 
16CMTanmay JainIND18375,50,020,023,0
28Garv GaurIND17974,50,023,025,0
37Chilukuri Sai VarshithIND18044,50,019,522,5
411Shaik Sumer ArshIND17334,50,019,521,5
53Shreyash Shuvam PatnaikIND18854,50,019,022,0
62Harsh SureshIND18874,50,019,021,5
71Pawar HarshitIND19174,50,019,021,0
824Bang AtharvaIND14464,50,016,518,0
916Dandekar AnujIND16084,00,019,020,5
1019Mrithyunjay MahadevanIND15694,00,016,018,0


Under-14 girls

It seemed as if Divya would run away with the title in the under-14 section. However, she was halted by Dhyana Patel. She is back now in the lead with 5.0/6, but is not the sole leader | Photo: Niklesh Jain

Vyshnavi Chinman beat Dhyana Patel in round 6 and is now in joint lead with Divya. Vyshnavi and Divya will play each other in the final round and it will be a good game to witness! The winner will become the champion! | Photo: Sagar Shah

Standings after round 6

Rk.SNoNameFEDRtgPts. TB1  TB2  TB3 
11WIMDivya DeshmukhIND23735,00,019,022,0
24WCMChinnam VyshnaviIND16645,00,018,520,5
36Yash Jyoti BirIND16464,50,018,020,5
42WFMDhyana PatelIND19004,00,021,524,5
57Velpula SarayuIND16404,00,020,522,5
63Boramanikar Tanisha SIND17204,00,019,021,0
75Shivika RohillaIND16484,00,018,021,0
812Femil ChelladuraiIND14464,00,018,020,0
914Sanjana RaghunathIND14274,00,017,519,0
1016Hemakshi ChauhanIND13753,50,020,021,5


Under-14 Open

Srihari LR is on 5.0/6. He was a pawn up against Kashish Jain, but couldn't convert it into a win | Photo: Sagar Shah

This is another section which is going to be closely contested. Aditya Varun Gampa takes on Rohith Krishna and Srihari will fight against Aaditya Dhingra.

Standings after round 6

Rk.SNoNameFEDRtgPts. TB1  TB2  TB3 
12FMSrihari L RIND22005,00,021,523,5
21FMRohith Krishna SIND23125,00,020,022,0
39Aditya Varun GampaIND19185,00,016,018,5
413Smit DevonRSA17434,50,018,521,0
57Aaditya DhingraIND19314,50,016,018,0
65Jain Kashish ManojIND19704,50,016,018,0
711Komal Srivatsav SajjaIND18324,50,015,017,5
88Adarsh TripathiIND19274,00,020,523,5
93Manish Kumar (2006)IND20554,00,020,022,0
106Aniruddh ChatterjeeIND19524,00,017,019,0


Under-16 girls

Leading right from the start Bristy Mukherjee is all set to win the gold in the under-16 girls. She is on 5.5/6 and has a one point lead over the field | Photo: Sagar Shah

Standings after round 6

Rk.SNoNameFEDRtgClub/CityPts. TB1  TB2  TB3 
12WCMBristy MukherjeeIND1862West Bengal5,50,020,022,5
29Meenatchi Rajam VIND1564Tamilnadu4,50,018,521,0
38Rindhiya VIND1573Tamilnadu4,00,021,524,0
41WFMJain NityataIND2135Madya Pradesh4,00,020,524,0
54WCMArushi KotwalIND1744JK4,00,019,522,0
63Adane NarayaniIND1859Maharastra4,00,017,520,0
77Sahoo AnkitaIND1586Orissa4,00,017,519,0
85Sudipa HaldarIND1678West Bengal3,50,018,521,0
96Routray PriyankaIND1647Orissa3,50,017,520,0
1012Shreetu Bhavikbhai NandiIND1328Gujrat3,50,017,519,0

Under-16 Open

Since the tournament began, the result in this section was never in doubt. Arjun Erigaisi with 6.0/6 has already won the gold | Photo:

Standings after round 6

Rk.SNoNameFEDRtgPts. TB1  TB2  TB3 
11GMErigaisi ArjunIND25316,00,019,022,0
27Dhrupad KashyapIND18844,50,018,020,5
33Soham KamotraIND21364,50,016,018,5
44Jinan JomonIND20534,00,020,022,5
55Tanmay ChopraIND20014,00,019,521,5
68Esshan WadhawanIND18594,00,019,021,0
715Kadam Rishi RIND17184,00,019,020,0
86Aan SikkaIND18994,00,018,020,5
92FMAjay KarthikeyanIND22163,50,022,024,5
1011Uttam Prakash SharmaIND18243,50,021,023,0

Under-18 girls

With 5.5/6 Priyanka K has a half point lead. She has to win her final round to secure her gold medal | Photo: Sagar Shah

Standings after round 6

Rk.SNoNameFEDRtgPts. TB1  TB2  TB3 
11Priyanka KIND22175,50,018,521,0
22WFMSanskriti GoyalIND19485,00,019,021,5
33Pandey SrishtiIND18824,00,019,521,5
44Mudaliar NandiniIND16094,00,019,021,0
55Jinal YagnikIND12023,50,019,519,5
69Manya SharmaIND10633,01,014,514,5
710Drishti GroverIND10623,00,012,512,5
88Mahima JaiswalIND10842,50,520,020,0
97Jaiswal KritikaIND11412,50,519,521,0
106Villoen ShariseRSA11842,00,015,515,5

Under-18 Open

Just like Arjun has done it in under-16 section, Iniyan has dominated the under-18 section with 6.0/6 and has won the gold | Photo: Niklesh Jain

Standings after round 6

Rk.SNoNameFEDRtgClub/CityPts. TB1  TB2  TB3 
11IMIniyan PIND2524Tamilnadu6,00,019,022,0
29Deota Snehil SIND1972Chattisgarh4,50,018,019,5
32FMManu David Suthandram RIND2415Tamilnadu4,00,021,524,0
46Aakash Sharadchandra DalviIND2032Maharastra4,00,020,023,0
58Gaurav Rajesh ZagadeIND1979Maharastra4,00,020,021,0
63Arjun C KrishnamachariIND2212Tamilnadu4,00,015,518,0
74Panesar VedantIND2092Maharastra3,50,021,525,0
810Dubey SanchayIND1823Utter Pradesh3,50,021,524,0
97Vinay Thomas AbrahamIND2020Kerala3,50,017,019,5
1018Tiwari ShivanshIND1593Madya Pradesh3,50,017,018,5


Under-20 girls

In spite of losing the sixth round, Vishwa Shah is still at the top of the standings with 4.5/6 | Photo: Sagar Shah

Rutuja Bakshi beat Vishwa Shah and opened up the tournament! | Photo: Sagar Shah

Standings after round 6

Rk.SNoNameFEDRtgPts. TB1  TB2  TB3 
17Shah VishwaIND17344,50,021,022,5
25WIMChandreyee HajraIND18684,50,019,521,5
34WFMPotluri SupreethaIND18734,50,019,021,0
43Bakshi RutujaIND19584,50,017,518,0
52WFMBommini Mounika AkshayaIND20634,00,019,021,0
68Rathi DhanashreeIND16854,00,014,515,0
71WFMMakhija AashnaIND20673,50,517,018,5
86Eesha Ajay SardaIND17523,50,516,518,0
99Ishvi AggarwalIND16643,00,019,521,0
1011Poornima GuptaIND14673,00,018,520,5

Under-20 Open

Suyog Wagh leads the under-20 section with 5.0/6 along with... | Photo: Sagar Shah

...Indrajeet Mahindrakar | Photo: Sagar Shah

Standings after round 6

Rk.SNoNameFEDRtgClub/CityPts. TB1  TB2  TB3 
11FMWagh SuyogIND2242Maharastra5,00,519,522,5
26Mahindrakar IndrajeetIND2092Maharastra5,00,518,521,5
39Pattnayak NilsuIND1967Orissa4,50,017,019,0
411Karthik Sai ChIND1864Telangana4,00,019,521,0
58Rohit SIND2001Tamilnadu4,00,018,521,0
63FMDushyant SharmaIND2168Punjab4,00,017,520,0
719Mckenzie Lionel JosephIND1596Tamilnadu4,00,017,520,0
816Dutta SarthakIND1702Utter Pradesh3,50,020,521,0
95Sarbojit PaulIND2093West Bengal3,50,019,521,5
104Kumar GauravIND2110Bihar3,50,018,521,0

Open Section: Abhijeet, Aravindh and Narayanan lead Commonwealth Championships 2019

Swapnil Dhopade fought on board no.1 against Abhijeet Gupta. After a relatively even opening and middlegame, he was suddenly in grave trouble in the endgame as he found himself a pawn down. He had to defend for over 140 moves to finally get the half point | Photo: Sagar Shah

Abhijeet faltered in this crucial position with ...Rh6. Instead ...Kg3 would have given him the full point and a half point lead going into the last round

S.L. Narayanan was up against Deepan Chakkravarthy and somewhere deep in the middlegame, he got into a completely lost position. Deepan was just not able to finish his opponent. Narayanan got his chance, capitalized on it and joined Abhijeet at the top. | Photo: Sagar Shah

If you were in Deepan's (White's) shoes here, how would you continue?

Deepan needed to play more carefully in a completely winning position. He took the loss as a powerful learning experience. | Photo: Sagar Shah

When in a must win situation, follow the game of Aravindh Chithambaram. The risks he takes, the sharp calculations he makes is simply amazing! | Photo: Sagar Shah

In game Aravindh went a little too far. His move 12.0-0-0 should have simply ended his game had Lalith Babu played a little more accurately. But as they say, no one ever won a championship without taking risk! Well, it seems Aravindh is all set to give it his all to win the Commonwealth title!

Lalith tried to fight tooth and nail against Aravindh, but just fell short in the end | Photo: Sagar Shah

Arjun Erigaisi managed to play a fine game to get the better of Debashis Das | Photo: Sagar Shah

This loss puts Debashis out of medal contention | Photo: Sagar Shah

Tania Sachdev fought hard, but eventually lost in a rook endgame against P. Iniyan | Photo: Sagar Shah

It was an interesting battle between two young talents of Indian chess Divya Deshmukh and Aaryan Varshney | Photo: Sagar Shah

It was nice to see that the parents (Gaurav Varshney on the left and Divya's parents) having a good time with each other while their kids fought it out on the board! | Photo: Sagar Shah

Srithan Saypuri, the youngster from Telangana is gaining 128 Elo points here | Photo: Sagar Shah

The battle between two of India's recent GMs Swayams Mishra and P. Karthikeyan ended in a draw | Photo: Sagar Shah

Sanskriti Goyal and Vaishali had the same outfit, the India jacket. The game ended in Vaishali's favour. | Photo: Sagar Shah

Results of round 8

Bo.No.NameRtgPts. ResultPts. NameRtgNo.
110GMSwapnil S. Dhopade 2488 ½ - ½6 GMGupta Abhijeet 26061
25GMDeepan Chakkravarthy J. 2557 0 - 1 GMNarayanan.S.L 26032
33GMAravindh Chithambaram Vr. 2598 1 - 0 GMLalith Babu M R 25714
47GMErigaisi Arjun 25265 1 - 0 GMDebashis Das 25446
519IMTania Sachdev 24015 0 - 15 IMIniyan P 25258
69IMSwayams Mishra 2493 ½ - ½5 GMKarthikeyan P. 244514
711IMKrishna C R G 2481 ½ - ½ FMWagh Suyog 225028
812GMKunte Abhijit 2478 1 - 0 WIMMahalakshmi M 224530
925FMNavalgund Niranjan 2326 1 - 0 GMLaxman R.R. 243715
1017WIMDivya Deshmukh 2414 1 - 0 FMAaryan Varshney 219636
1127IMSaravana Krishnan P. 2290 1 - 0 IMNitin S. 239820
1229Bhambure Shantanu 2248 1 - 0 WGMKulkarni Bhakti 238021
1358WFMSanskriti Goyal 1951 0 - 1 WGMVaishali R 233824
1413GMThejkumar M. S. 24584 1 - 04 Kumar Gaurav 208245
1539WIMMichelle Catherina P 21824 0 - 14 IMShyaamnikhil P 243416

GM Sahaj Grover's mother Sangeeta had her own clothes stall at the same venue, but not in the chess tournament, but at completely different event. | Photo: Sagar Shah

Men on a mission - AK Verma, Secretary of Delhi Chess Association and Bharat Singh Chauhan, Secretary AICF | Photo: Sagar Shah

The man who makes sure all the game are live AnandhBabu VL | Photo: Sagar Shah

Standings after round 8

Rk.SNoNameFEDRtgClub/CityPts. TB1  TB2  TB3 
21GMGupta AbhijeetIND2606Delhi6,50,036,540,0
33GMAravindh Chithambaram Vr.IND2598Tamilnadu6,50,036,039,5
410GMSwapnil S. DhopadeIND2488Maharastra6,00,037,540,5
57GMErigaisi ArjunIND2526Telangana6,00,035,539,0
68IMIniyan PIND2525Tamilnadu6,00,030,533,5
727IMSaravana Krishnan P.IND2290Tamilnadu5,50,038,542,5
86GMDebashis DasIND2544Orissa5,50,037,040,5
95GMDeepan Chakkravarthy J.IND2557Tamilnadu5,50,035,539,5
104GMLalith Babu M RIND2571Andra Pradesh5,50,034,538,0
1112GMKunte AbhijitIND2478Maharastra5,50,033,537,5
1224WGMVaishali RIND2338Tamilnadu5,50,033,035,5
1314GMKarthikeyan P.IND2445Tamilnadu5,50,033,035,5
1429Bhambure ShantanuIND2248Maharastra5,50,032,536,0
1525FMNavalgund NiranjanIND2326Karnataka5,50,031,535,0
1617WIMDivya DeshmukhIND2414Maharastra5,50,031,534,0
1716IMShyaamnikhil PIND24345,00,035,039,0
1813GMThejkumar M. S.IND2458Karnataka5,00,034,538,5
1935FMSrihari L RIND2214Tamilnadu5,00,034,538,0
2019IMTania SachdevIND2401Delhi5,00,034,537,5

Video Gallery:

Vaibhav Gautam is unable to walk, unable to speak, but he let's his moves on the board do the talking. Suffering from Cerebral Palsy, right since birth, Vaibhav found the sport of chess to be a perfect one to pursue. His father Manoj has put in a lot of energy and effort to make it possible for his son to compete at important events. Vaibhav started with an Elo of 1019 and is now all the way up to 1293! Get to know this gem of Indian chess and how he plays as we witness one of his games where he puts a 1922 rated player in grave trouble.

Shantanu Bhambure was a talented youngster around seven years ago, but he quit chess to pursue his engineering. From Mumbai, he went to Pune and finished his education. He became a Mechanical Engineer from the Sinhagad University. Time for a job hunt, right? Well, Shantanu felt that it was enough time away from his first love, and decided to come back to chess. From a rating of 2052 in August 2017, he began playing chess seriously and now has a rating of 2275 as on 1st of July 2019. We try to understand how Shantanu made this comeback and also check his eighth round win at the Commonwealth Championships 2019 against Bhakti Kulkarni - the current women's national champion.

S.L. Narayanan was not feeling well after round 6 and was planning to withdraw his name from the event. But he decided to play on, and what a wonderful decision it was. He beat two strong opponents - Arjun Erigaisi in round 7 and Deepan Chakkravarthy in round 8. With 6.5/8, he is now in joint lead along with Abhijeet Gupta and Aravindh Chithambaram. In the final round Narayanan takes on Aravindh on the top board. In this video we have Narayanan analyzing his win over Deepan Chakkravarthy from the black side of the English and also telling us some of his training methods as to how he works on late opening and middlegame positions.

A lot of players say chess is life, but they don't live that sentence! O.T.Anilkumar from Kerala perfectly fits the term "Chess is Life!" He is 56 years old and has won the Kerala State Championships seven times. His highest rating was 2316, and he is now down to 1989, but he doesn't really worry. For him playing chess is more important. In order make ends meet, he doesn't coach students, but he plays training games with him. He feels that he can play chess at the good level, and this is excellent training for youngsters who need playing practice. Also he brings his students to tournaments and takes care of them, which helps him to cover his tournament expenses! In this video we see Anilkumar's chess strength as he beats IM Nisha Mohota with the white pieces.