Invincible Pranav Venkatesh wins Magnus Academy Challenge 2022, Bharath Subramaniyam third
GM Pranav Venkatesh scored an unbeaten 38/42 to win Challengers Chess Tour 2022 Magnus Chess Academy Challenge. One must not forget that he is also playing in the World Youth Under-16 Olympiad for India on the same day. Thus, this triumph makes it that much more special. His performance is on par with Esipenko's win in the Julius Baer Challenge last month. Since the total number of players was one less than the previous event, thus the number of rounds also got reduced by one. Perhaps if there were one more round, Pranav could have tied Esipenko's score. IM Ihor Samunenkov (UKR) scored 35/42 to finish second and GM Bharath Subramaniyam H finished third with a score of 28/42. Photo: chess24
Pranav and Ihor in the Finals
Challengers Chess Tour Finals will take place later this month on 29th and 30th October 2022. We now know the four finalists - GM Andrey Esipenko, GM Raunak Sadhwani, GM Pranav Venkatesh and IM Ihor Samunenkov.
Round 9: Pranav - Bharath: 3-0
GM Pranav Venkatesh started the day with a win over compatriot GM Bharath Subramaniyam H.
Round 10: Abhimanyu - Sahithi: 0-3
WIM Sahithi Varshini M perhaps scored her biggest win of the event against the youngest GM of the world, Abhimanyu Mishra.
Black is making some deadly threats on the g-file. The best course of action when an opponent attacks is to exchange the pieces. 16.Qd2 gxh3 17.Qh6+ forces the exchange of queens which means Black's attack gets reduced and White can gain some advantage of his own. However, White opted 16.Rxh5 gxh3 17.Bh6+ Ke8 18.g3 Bg4 19.Qe1+ Kd8 and now Black is completely winning.
Round 11: Bharath - Ilamparthi: 0-3
The newly crowned World Under-14 Open champion defeated India's 73rd GM Bharath Subramaniyam H in a back and forth wild game which could have gone either player's way.