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Delhi 2018 Round 5+6: Indian, Azerbaijani and Bangladeshi GM lead!

by Sagar Shah - 13/01/2018

The Delhi International 2018 is poised for a super finish! After six rounds we have three leaders - one Azeri, one Bangladeshi and one Indian! Arkadij Naiditsch, Ziaur Rahman and Karthikeyan Murali are on 5.5/6. In this report we look at both the games of these three players. We analyze them to understand how were they able to outplay their strong opponents. We also have a detailed coverage of the B-section which ended today. It was won by Subhra Saha of Kolkata and he took back Rs.2,51,000. He plans to buy a Royal Enfield! Report with excellent photography by Niklesh Jain.

Video report Round 5+6:

Bangladesh's evergreen:

Just like Vishy Anand never ceases to surprise us, the same is the case with Bangladesh's Ziaur Rahman. He has been the top player of Bangladesh for many years. Recently he has shed a lot of rating points, but that does not mean that he can be taken lightly. When inspired, Ziaur Rahman can come up with some of his best chess, as he is doing at the 16th Delhi International 2018. He beat GM Tran Tuan Minh in round 4, followed by GM Farrukh Amonatov in round 5.

Clearing the battlefield before the war begins! | Photo: Niklesh Jain

The game between Amonatov and Ziaur was decided by a blunder by the 2600+ GM. In a position that was quite interesting, Farrukh's mind simply switched off and he blundered a full piece!

Ziaur Rahman had just got his bishop back to e8. Rde2 was necessary with an even position. But Farrukh played Rxe5 here. Can you see how to win?

After exchanging some pleasantries in Bengali, Ziaur Rahman and Deep Sengupta got down to business | Photo: Niklesh Jain

Deep's one reckless move was enough to put him into grave trouble right out of the opening. Ziaur Rahman could have really put a lot of pressure on his opponent, but as he said after the game, playing against three GMs in three rounds had become too strenuous. And so instead of pushing hard, he made a benign move and the game ended in a draw.

An interview with Ziaur Rahman - "I am happy if my son and students perform well at chess!"

The 2700+ GM!

What does it feel like to be the only 2700+ GM in the playing hall? Ask Arkadij Naiditsch. It is not at all easy and everyone is after your blood. Especially if you are facing ambitious and dangerous players like GM Deepan Chakkravarthy.

Deepan had the Azeri GM on the mat. However, he was not able to finish him off. | Photo: Niklesh Jain

Naiditsch took on Vaibhav Suri in the sixth round | Photo: Niklesh Jain

Once Naiditsch had the win over Deepan in the bag, he played a flawless game against Vaibhav Suri with the white pieces to move to 5.5/6 and join Ziaur Rahman at the top.

The Indian hope:

The third leader of the event Karthikeyan Murali | Photo: Niklesh Jain

Usually at such International Opens, it's the international players who take away all the goodies. But Karthikeyan Murali is here to ensure that Indians get their due! In the fifth round he launched a great attack against the talented Arjun Erigaisi's king.

White to play. Can you launch an attack like Karthikeyan does? How do you start?

After his win over Arjun, Karthikeyan played with the white pieces again and got an even position out of the opening against Himal Gusain. But later he managed to weave some of his magic in the rook endgame and scored the full point. Have a look at this instructive game: 

Marat Dzhumaev's birthday was celebrated in style by the organizers. This is the 13th time that the Uzbek GM is celebrating his birthday at the Delhi International 2018. | Photo: Niklesh Jain

WIM Angela Franco, who has travelled all the way from Colombia, is playing a fine tournament. She beat Rahul Sangma in the fourth round and then Shailesh Dravid in the sixth | Photo: Amruta Mokal
Travelling 55 hours from Colombia to India - Interview with Angela Franco in Spanish

David Llada is mesmerising the crowd at the Delhi International with his sublime photography! Here is one of his pictures that we like a lot: | Photo: Niklesh Jain

ChessBase India's co-founder and Creative Head Amruta Mokal | Photo: David Llada

A few words must be said about the man in the picture above - Anandh Babu. He has been travelling from one tournament to the next right from the World Youth Olympiad 2017. He makes sure that all the games are shown live. Often there are insurmountable technical difficulties, but Anandh always has a solution. The games that you can see on ChessBase live, Follow Chess, as well as Official websites, is thanks to his efforts. He is truly powering chess in India. Without the live games, no one would be able to follow the tournament. It's been nearly one and a half month and he is away from his wife and young son. Of course, he misses them, but right now the family has to wait. After this tournament, Anandh will finally go to his hometown in Chennai.

In what was one of the biggest upsets of the tournament, IM Himal Gusain beat Commonwealth Champion Abhijeet Gupta | Photo: Niklesh Jain

As intense as it can get! | Photo: Amruta Mokal

Results Round 5

Bo.No. NameRtgPts.ResultPts.NameRtg No.
GMAmonatov Farrukh26360 - 14GMRahman Ziaur2472
GMDeepan Chakkravarthy J.24750 - 1GMNaiditsch Arkadij2701
IMGusain Himal24501 - 0GMGupta Abhijeet2610
GMSengupta Deep25861 - 0IMSindarov Javokhir2429
Arjun Kalyan2407½ - ½GMTiviakov Sergei2584
GMKarthikeyan Murali25801 - 0FMErigaisi Arjun2386
Akash Pc Iyer24151 - 0GMSolodovnichenko Yuri2571
GMTukhaev Adam25700 - 1IMMohammad Nubairshah Shaikh2380
GMDavid Alberto25531 - 0Koustav Chatterjee2288
GMVaibhav Suri25421 - 0GMRoy Chowdhury Saptarshi2318

Results Round 6

Bo.No. NameRtgPts.ResultPts.NameRtg No.
GMRahman Ziaur24725½ - ½GMSengupta Deep2586
GMNaiditsch Arkadij27011 - 0GMVaibhav Suri2542
GMKarthikeyan Murali25801 - 0IMGusain Himal2450
GMDavid Alberto2553½ - ½Akash Pc Iyer2415
GMGareyev Timur26054½ - ½IMMohammad Nubairshah Shaikh2380
GMRozum Ivan259541 - 04Arjun Kalyan2407
GMTiviakov Sergei258441 - 04Sammed Jaykumar Shete2337
GMSivuk Vitaly255041 - 04Saravana Krishnan P.2323
IMSardana Rishi240240 - 14GMTran Tuan Minh2548
WGMGomes Mary Ann23284½ - ½4GMPruijssers Roeland2536

Pairing Round 7

Bo.No. NameRtgPts.ResultPts.NameRtg No.
GMRahman Ziaur2472GMNaiditsch Arkadij2701
GMTran Tuan Minh25485GMKarthikeyan Murali2580
IMVignesh N R247055GMRozum Ivan2595
GMSengupta Deep258655GMSivuk Vitaly2550
Akash Pc Iyer241555GMTiviakov Sergei2584
IMMohammad Nubairshah Shaikh238055GMDavid Alberto2553
FMGajwa Ankit22845GMVaibhav Suri2542
GMAmonatov Farrukh2636IMSindarov Javokhir2429
IMNitin S.2422GMGareyev Timur2605
GMPruijssers Roeland2536IMShyaamnikhil P2397

Group B:

Group B was won by Subhra Saha with a score of 9.0/10. He won the crucial last round against Pankaj Sharma to win the event as the sole leader on 9.0/10.

The crucial last round struggle between Subhra Saha and Pankaj Sharma | Photo: Niklesh Jain

The tension when Rs. 2,51,000 is at stake! | Photo: Niklesh Jain

Subhra Saha with the winners' trophy and a cash prize of Rs, 2,51,000. On the left of your screen is Madhusoodanan K.R and on the right Tirtha Sarkar | Photo: Niklesh Jain
Niklesh Jain speaks with Subhra Saha on his last round encounter with Pankaj Sharma

As I walked through the B section yesterday I realized so many people in India play chess just for the fun of the game. I would go to board 250 of 300 and there would be a middle-aged man who has left all his work and has come to Delhi from a far-off place investing in hotel, travel and just about everything. He knows that there isn't much of a chance to win a prize, yet he plays with full concentration and focus. This is nothing but the love for the game of chess. We should congratulate the Delhi Chess Association for getting together 748 chess loving people under one roof for the B-category. 1400 expected in the C-section!

Photo gallery by Niklesh Jain

Passion for chess! 84-year-old T.V. Subramaniam | Photo: Niklesh Jain
Watch this interview of the 84-year-old man where he disagrees with Bobby Fischer's famous statement - Chess Is Life

The dignitaries on dais for the closing ceremony of the B-group | Photo: Niklesh Jain

Two key personnel of the Delhi Chess Association - Vishal Sareen (left) and A.K. Verma | Photo: Niklesh Jain

If Bharat Singh finds it heavy, it is heavy! | Photo: Niklesh Jain

Subhra Saha's ticket to buying a Royal Enfield! | Photo: Niklesh Jain

For all the pictures of the winners of the closing ceremony, click here.

Rank after Round 10

Rk.SNoNameTypsexFEDRtgClub/CityPts. TB1  TB2  TB3 
1203Subhra SahaIND1727Wes9,00,065,570,0
2202Madhusoodanan K.R.IND1727Ker8,50,067,072,0
3167Tirtha SarkarIND1759Wes8,50,063,067,0
488Sathya Giri VIND1842TN8,50,059,563,0
5157Deepak RaiIND1773Del8,50,057,562,0
632Punit IndoraIND1905Har8,50,057,062,5
77Thounaojam Gobin LuwangIND1971NEMan8,00,064,568,0
9144Chittari Abhishek VarmaIND1784Mah8,00,062,067,0
1013CMSharma PankajIND1940Pun8,00,062,066,0
112Panta SumitNEP19908,00,061,566,5
1254Vinodh Kumar B.IND1878Pon8,00,060,565,0
1316Sandip DeyIND1933Wes8,00,059,565,0
1498Raju O AIND1836Ker8,00,058,063,0
1583Rohit Ramanan T GIND1844TN8,00,057,062,5
1690Warude SatyamIND1841Mah8,00,055,059,5
1773De Silva OsheenSRI18568,00,053,556,0
185Joy Lazar M.A.IND1976Ker8,00,053,057,0
1968Dave KantilalS60IND1861Raj7,50,061,066,0
20409Suhaib AhmadIND1528UP7,50,060,565,5


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