chessbase india logo

Asian 2019 Round 2: Karthikeyan does a Kramnik

by Satanick Mukhuty - 09/06/2019

In what was every bit classy chess, Murali Karthikeyan won his second game in a row when he defeated Xu Zhihang of China. India's triple crown champion Aravindh Chithambaram was also in his element when he grabbed the chance to create a demolishing passer against Zhao Yuanhe. Sethuraman S.P. beat Raunak Sadhwani in a Najdorf when the latter made a careless move. In the women's section, Bhakti Kulkarni continued her conquest by beating Hoang Thi Bao Tram. It was round 2 at the Asian continental championships 2019 and in this report we bring you the most important moments of the day's excitement.

Karthi, Sethu and Vishnu on 100%

Murali Karthikeyan's performance stood out today for it's uncanny resemblance with Kramnik's Berlin immortal against Aronian in the Candidates 2018. Let's first have a look at the idea executed by Kramnik:

 

Aronian - Kramnik, Candidates 2018

Aronian has just played his pawn to h3. How did Kramnik continue?

...Rg8!! Well, the h3 pawn is a hook and g5-g4 would be very strong, so why not! Vlad went on to win an amazing game! You can check it out in this video analyzed by Sagar Shah

Let's come back to Karthikeyan's game against Xu Zhihang from the Asian Continental 2019, Round 2:

 

Murali Karthikeyan - Xu Zhihang, Round 2

Now that you have the knowledge of the Kramnik game, how do you think White continued?

Karthikeyan played 12.Rg1!? - the beginning of a devious plan. White intends here to storm out with g4 and g5 against Black's castled king. Black is certainly not lost but practically it is very difficult to defend against such a direct onslaught. The game went 12...Rae8 13.g4 Qd8 14.g5  and what followed next was a heavy rampage along the g-file. 

White king sits uncastled and pretty on e1, while the Black monarch is under a lot of stress on g8

Karthikeyan's opponent was forced to call it quits after White played 26.Rg1 literally breathing fire through the g-file.

The full game with comments is presented below:

Karthikeyan learnt from Kramnik's games and applied this in his own encounter! | Amruta Mokal

Another interesting game to note is Ganguly vs Axel Smith, where the same opening was played and White got a huge advantage 

Aravindh Chithambaram, the first ever triple crown champion of India, played solidly against Zhao Yuanhe and seized the opportunity with both hands when it presented itself. | Photo: imsa.cn

The following was the turning point in the game:

 

Aravindh Chithambaram - Zhao Yuanhe, Round 2

In a roughly equal position Black has just moved 22...Na4?! - a mistake that gives White serious edge. Aravindh didn't miss anything when he played 23.Nc6! the game continued 23...Bxc6 24.Bxg7 Kxg7 25.dxc6 and White got a monster of a passer in the c6 pawn.

The above shows position after 30.Bb5, White has a decisive advantage but Aravindh's task was made all the more easy when his opponent blundered on the 35th move:

The above shows position after 35...Rd6? - a blunder. After 36.Rxd6 Qxd6 37,Qd5 Black called it a day! 

Elsewhere, Sethuraman S.P. too registered an impressive victory over Raunak Sadhwani | Photo: imsa.cn

Raunak Sadhwani - Sethuraman S.P, Round 2

In a roughly balanced position White played 29.Rfe1? - a mistake that allowed 29...g4! and after 30.Nf1 f4 31.Nxe3 fxe3 32.Be2 Ne4! Black's advantage is tangible.

With the rook on f8 and the knight jumping to f2, the queen all ready to join in, White is in a very difficult position

Vidit Gujrathi played solid chess and drew his game against Xu Yinglun (2548). Vidit is now on 1.5/2 | Photo: imsa.cn

Vishnu Prasanna beat S.L. Narayanan and moved to 2.0/2. Along with Karthikeyan and Sethuraman, he is the third Indian players on 2.0/2 | Photo: Niklesh Jain

Karthik Venkatraman beat Xu Minghui (2368) and is on 1.5/2 | Photo: imsa.cn

Abhijeet Gupta is on 1.5/2. In round two he drew his game against Xu Yi (2526) | Photo: imsa.cn

Praggnanandhaa's duel against Alireza Firouzja was looked forward to with great interest by chess fans across the globe as two young prodigies were going to be pitted against each other. The game lived upto the expectations as both players struck blow for blow before the game ending in a draw! | Photo: imsa.cn

Here's the game with Tactical Analysis (computer generated analysis). The variations may not be 100% accurate, but they give you an idea of how complicated the game was!

Results of round 2

Bo.No. NameRtgPts. ResultPts. NameRtg No.
123
GMXu Yinglun 25481 ½ - ½1 GMVidit Santosh Gujrathi 2707
1
224
GMPraggnanandhaa R 25371 ½ - ½1 GMFirouzja Alireza 2682
3
328
GMTran Tuan Minh 25261 1 - 01 GMMaghsoodloo Parham 2665
5
46
GMNguyen Ngoc Truong Son 26391 ½ - ½1 IMLi Di 2535
25
532
GMLiu Yan 25041 1 - 01 GMJumabayev Rinat 2625
7
636
IMSadhwani Raunak 24821 0 - 11 GMSethuraman S.P. 2613
9
710
GMGupta Abhijeet 26061 ½ - ½1 IMXu Yi 2526
29
850
FMZou Chen 24151 ½ - ½1 GMNihal Sarin 2606
11
912
GMNarayanan.S.L 26031 0 - 11 GMVishnu Prasanna. V 2511
31
1016
GMKarthikeyan Murali 25931 1 - 01 IMXu Zhihang 2504
33
1118
GMXu Xiangyu 25831 ½ - ½1 IMKrishna C R G 2481
37
1222
GMAryan Chopra 25531 ½ - ½1 IMRahul Srivatshav P 2395
57
132
GMLe Quang Liem 2694½ 1 - 0½ IMVignesh N R 2459
41
144
GMAdhiban B. 2676½ ½ - ½½ IMBilguun Sumiya 2478
39
158
GMLu Shanglei 2624½ 1 - 0½ IMGarcia Jan Emmanuel 2413
51
1614
GMAravindh Chithambaram Vr. 2598½ 1 - 0½ Zhao Yuanhe 2444
45
1754
IMAkash G 2404½ 1 - 0½ GMIdani Pouya 2597
15
1852
Zhang Ziji 2408½ ½ - ½½ IMYakubboev Nodirbek 2587
17
1958
FMAmartuvshin Ganzorig 2394½ 0 - 1½ GMLalith Babu M R 2571
19
2056
Lin Yi 2396½ ½ - ½½ GMSengupta Deep 2559
21

Standings after round 2

Rk.SNo NameFEDRtgPts. TB1  TB2  TB3  TB4 nwwew-weKrtg+/-
128
GMTran Tuan MinhVIE25262,026651,02,00,0221,030,97109,7
232
GMLiu YanCHN25042,026251,01,00,0221,110,89108,9
331
GMVishnu Prasanna. VIND25112,026031,01,50,0221,130,87108,7
416
GMKarthikeyan MuraliIND25932,025041,02,00,0221,360,64106,4
59
GMSethuraman S.P.IND26132,024821,02,00,0221,410,59105,9
623
GMXu YinglunCHN25481,527071,52,00,021,51,010,49104,9
724
GMPraggnanandhaa RIND25371,526821,51,50,021,51,030,47104,7
825
IMLi DiCHN25351,526391,52,00,021,51,080,42104,2
929
IMXu YiCHN25261,526061,52,50,021,51,120,38103,8
1050
FMZou ChenCHN24151,526061,52,00,021,50,510,99109,9
1154
IMAkash GIND24041,525971,01,50,021,50,510,99109,9
1237
IMKrishna C R GIND24811,525831,51,50,021,51,280,22102,2
1357
IMRahul Srivatshav PIND23951,525611,52,50,021,50,570,93109,3
141
GMVidit Santosh GujrathiIND27071,525481,52,50,021,51,500,00100,0
153
GMFirouzja AlirezaIRI26821,525371,52,50,021,51,460,04100,4
166
GMNguyen Ngoc Truong SonVIE26391,525351,51,50,021,51,380,12101,2
1710
GMGupta AbhijeetIND26061,525261,52,00,021,51,330,17101,7
1818
GMXu XiangyuCHN25831,524811,51,50,021,51,380,12101,2
192
GMLe Quang LiemVIE26941,524781,01,50,021,51,57-0,0710-0,7
208
GMLu ShangleiCHN26241,524440,51,00,021,51,51-0,0110-0,1

Women's Section

Bhakti Kulkarni continued her conquest by registering yet another victory, this time against Hoang Thi Bao Tram in a clinical fashion. | Photo: David Llada

Following was the position when Bhakti (with the black pieces) started to look dominant:

 

Hoang Thi Bao Tram - Bhakti Kulkarni, Round 2

The above is after 17...Nc4, the knight supported by the c8 rook is embedded firmly in White's camp 

Fast forward a few more moves, Black has just played 23...Bh6! proclaiming a full-fledged domination.

After 30...h4 Black is threatening a nasty fork on g3. White went 31.Rg2 and after 31...Ng3+ 32.Rxg3 hxg3 33.Nc5 Bxe3 Black crashed through!

With this win Bhakti is one of the four players in the lead with 2.0/2 in the women's section. The other three are Ren Xiaoyi, M.Mahalakshmi and Dinara Saduakassova.

Mahalakshmi beat R. Vaishali to move to 2.0/2 | Photo: Amruta Mokal

Eesha Karavade beat Zhang Xiao (2234) and is on 1.5/2 | Photo: David Llada

After losing round 1 to the top seed Nisha Mohota drew her game in round 2 against Anousha Mahdian (2078) | Photo: imsa.cn

Mary Ann Gomes lost in round 2 to Zhai Mo and is on 0.5/2 | Photo: imsa.cn

Results of round 2

Bo.No. NameRtgPts. ResultPts. NameRtg No.
112
Li Xueyi 23051 0 - 11 IMSaduakassova Dinara 2458
1
213
WGMHoang Thi Bao Tram 22931 0 - 11 WGMKulkarni Bhakti 2380
3
34
IMSukandar Irine Kharisma 23781 ½ - ½1 WGMKurbonboeva Sarvinoz 2259
15
414
WFMLi Yunshan 22641 ½ - ½1 WFMMunkhzul Turmunkh 2371
5
516
Ren Xiaoyi 22551 1 - 01 IMPham Le Thao Nguyen 2370
7
618
WIMMahalakshmi M 22451 1 - 01 WGMVaishali R 2338
9
710
WGMVo Thi Kim Phung 23371 ½ - ½1 WIMDauletova Gulmira 2252
17
86
IMKaravade Eesha 2370½ 1 - 01 Zhang Xiao 2234
20
98
WGMZhai Mo 2358½ 1 - 0½ WGMGomes Mary Ann 2314
11
1029
WIMSan Diego Marie Antoinette 2080½ ½ - ½½ WFMMendoza Shania Mae 2171
24
112
IMMunguntuul Batkhuyag 24200 1 - 0½ WGMFrayna Janelle Mae 2157
26
1219
IMMohota Nisha 22360 ½ - ½0 WFMMahdian Anousha 2078
30
1321
WGMSwati Ghate 22200 0 - 10 WIMGalas Bernadette 2073
31
1433
Yan Tianqi 20360 ½ - ½0 WIMWang Doudou 2188
22
1523
WIMGu Tianlu 21830 ½ - ½0 WFMTan Li Ting 2066
32
1625
WIMPham Bich Ngoc 21670 1 - 00 Xia Ri Feng 1991
34
1727
WIMMordido Kylen Joy 21330 ½ - ½0 WCMKojima Natsumi 1711
36
1835
WIMHamid Rani 19290 0 - 10 WGMKiran Manisha Mohanty 2090
28

Standings after round 2

Rk.SNo NameFEDRtgPts. TB1  TB2  TB3  TB4 nwwew-weKrtg+/-
116
Ren XiaoyiCHN22552,023701,01,50,0110,340,662013,2
218
WIMMahalakshmi MIND22452,023381,01,50,0221,290,712014,2
31
IMSaduakassova DinaraKAZ24582,023051,01,50,0221,480,52105,2
43
WGMKulkarni BhaktiIND23802,022931,01,00,0221,330,672013,4
515
WGMKurbonboeva SarvinozUZB22591,523781,52,00,021,51,120,38207,6
614
WFMLi YunshanCHN22641,523711,52,00,021,51,110,394015,6
717
WIMDauletova GulmiraKAZ22521,523371,51,50,021,51,250,25205,0
88
WGMZhai MoCHN23581,523140,51,00,021,51,320,18101,8
95
WFMMunkhzul TurmunkhMGL23711,522641,52,00,021,51,390,11202,2
104
IMSukandar Irine KharismaINA23781,522591,52,00,021,51,410,09100,9

Related:

Aronian vs Kramnik analyzed by IM Sagar Shah
Ganguly explains his win over Axel Smith