India's hunt for medals at World Cadets 2019 begins!
The FIDE World Cadet Chess Championships (under-8, under-10, and under-12) have commenced in Weifang, China. Often dubbed as the kite capital of the world, Weifang is a prefecture-level city of the central Shandong province which is famous for its flamboyant kite festival celebrations that take place in the spring of every year. However, this beautiful chinese port city is in the spotlight these days for an entirely different reason as it is hosting the most important contest for budding chess talents from around the world. The Indian contingent, with thirty-one of its players, makes for one of the largest representations in this grand event. With promising youngsters like Savitha Shri B, Shahil Dey, Dev Shah, Ilamparthi A R, Yash Bharadiya, Vivaan Saraogi, Aishani Pathak, and Lakshana Subramanian competing in different categories, the country's hope for medals this time is soaring high.
The FIDE World Cadet Chess Championships 2019 started off on the 21st of August with a colourful opening ceremony. Guests who graced the occasion with their presence included the best female player of all time Grandmaster Judit Polgar who is also currently the Vice President of FIDE, Director Zhu Goping, Vice Director Wang Yankui, and Mrs Li Ping the Deputy Mayor of Weifang city. This eleven-round swiss event being organised by the Chinese Chess Association gives each player 90 minutes for the first 40 moves then 30 minutes for the rest of the game with 30 seconds increment per move from move one.
Round 1: Savitha Shri B. survives a scare
Savitha Shri B, the top-seed of under-12 girls, survived a massive scare against Wang Shunshun in the very first round. She made a weakening pawn move on the kingside and ended up in a totally lost position which she then had to defend for a staggering ninety-nine moves to salvage a draw.
Savitha Shri B - Wang Shunshun, Round 1
The other Indians in under-12 girls namely Akshaya R and Tejaswi R, won their respective games. Overall, Indians had mixed results in the 1st round in all catagories. In under-12 open-3rd seeded Sahil Dey drew with Chen Zhi of China; while Dev Shah, Om Kadam, and Mahendra Teja won their games. Atharva Bang lost to Chen Kailin of China.
In under-10 Girls Sneha Halder, Indira Priyadarshini, and Aswinika M won their games while Sachi Jain lost. And in the open section Ilamparthi, Yash Bharadia, Mayank C, Raghu Ram Reddy, and Arun Dakshin won their games. Rajveer P N drew and Aarav Sinha lost.
In under-8 girls, only Lakshana S, Meenakshi KA, and Anaisha PN could win their games; Ashiana P drew and the rest - Samaira Jain, Aadhya Jain and Deepu A - lost their games. By far the best result in round one came from under-8 open where four out of the total five players registered victory. The winners were Vivaan VS, Jaivardhan Raj, Ayushman M, Amogh Bisht. And it was only Ishaan S K who drew his game.
Round 2: Ilamparthi pulls off a deceiving queen sac!
Ekansh Mehrotra - Ilamparthi A R, Round 2
In under-10 Open - along with Ilamparthi A R - Mayank C, Bharadia Yash, Raghuram Reddy, and Dakshin Arun also registered victory in the second round. While in girls section of the same category Sneha H and Indira P registered their second consecutive wins.
Round 3: Vivaan's victories continue!
Vivaan Vijay Saraogi registered his third victory in the third round of the event to lead the table along with six others. This win the white pieces against a Sicilian Dragon was absolutely crushing.
Vivaan Vijay Saraogi - Xu Minglang, Round 3
16...hxg4 would have been okay for Black here, after 17.h5 Rh8 Black seems to be holding on but 16...Qa5 that was played in the game was just careless. White continued with 17.Nb3 gaining a tempo on the queen first and after 17...Qa6 came 18.e5!
Black was afraid of g5 after dxe5 and hence went 18...Ne8 but this simply quickened matters. After 19.gxh5 Bc6 20.Qe3 dxe5 21.Qxe5+ White launched a deadly onslaught on the black king that ended only with a checkmate. Replay the full game with brief annotations below:
Rounds 4-5: Back to back wins for Mayank Chakraborty
In under-10 open Mayank Chakraborty kept up his good form to register two consecutive victories in rounds four and five and stay at heels of the leader Marco Materia from France. On the other hand in round four Mahendra Teja Mekala emerged as the sole leader of the under-12 open section but lost this stature soon in the next round by losing to Mikhei Navumenka. Let us now see the highlights of Mayank's game against Wei Jianzhou from round five.
Mayank Chakraborty - Wei Jianzhou, Round 5
Black soon picked up the pawns on e6 and f5 and went on to win the game fairly easily. Replay the full game below:
An overview of all Indian performances after five rounds
|9||Vivaan Vijay Saraogi||1480||IND||1||1||1||0||1||4,0||5||40||-16,40||U8 Open|
|22||Jaivardhan Raj||1287||IND||1||1||½||1||0||3,5||13||40||15,20||U8 Open|
|27||Ayushman Mohanty||1269||IND||1||0||1||1||1||4,0||7||40||36,80||U8 Open|
|28||Amogh Bisht||1260||IND||1||1||0||1||½||3,5||14||40||50,00||U8 Open|
|29||Ishaan Singh Khanuja||1240||IND||½||1||1||0||1||3,5||21||40||22,40||U8 Open|
|3||Ilamparthi A R||1984||IND||1||1||½||1||½||4,0||8||40||-17,60||U10 Open|
|4||Bharadia Yash||1963||IND||1||1||½||½||½||3,5||17||40||-38,00||U10 Open|
|14||Mayank Chakraborty||1731||IND||1||1||½||1||1||4,5||4||40||26,00||U10 Open|
|25||Raghu Ram Reddy Seelam||1631||IND||1||1||½||0||0||2,5||47||40||-31,60||U10 Open|
|26||Daakshin Arun||1628||IND||1||1||0||1||½||3,5||13||40||8,00||U10 Open|
|47||Rajveer Pinkesh Nahar||1410||IND||½||0||1||1||0||2,5||62||40||-3,60||U10 Open|
|51||Aarav Sinha||1383||IND||0||1||1||½||½||3,0||40||40||32,80||U10 Open|
|3||CM||Shahil Dey||2207||IND||½||0||½||1||1||3,0||44||40||-67,20||U12 Open|
|4||CM||Dev Shah||2161||IND||1||1||0||1||1||4,0||11||40||-7,60||U12 Open|
|17||CM||Kadam Om Manish||2028||IND||1||½||1||1||½||4,0||10||40||-9,20||U12 Open|
|41||Mahendra Teja Mekala||1827||IND||1||1||1||1||0||4,0||5||40||79,60||U12 Open|
|75||Bang Atharva||1486||IND||0||1||0||0||1||2,0||82||40||-6,40||U12 Open|
|4||Aishani Pathak||1245||IND||½||0||1||½||0||2,0||47||40||-13,60||U8 Girls|
|10||Lakshana Subramanian||1159||IND||1||0||1||0||1||3,0||24||40||0,00||U8 Girls|
|17||Kolagatla Alana Meenakshi||1061||IND||1||½||½||0||1||3,0||30||40||0,00||U8 Girls|
|21||Anaishaa Pinkesh Nahar||1033||IND||1||0||½||0||½||2,0||52||40||0,00||U8 Girls|
|23||Aadhya Jain||1008||IND||0||1||1||1||1||4,0||9||40||0,00||U8 Girls|
|24||Abhishree Deepu||0||IND||0||1||0||1||0||2,0||55||0||0,00||U8 Girls|
|58||Samaira Jain||0||IND||0||0||0||1||0||1,0||70||0||0,00||U8 Girls|
|12||Sneha Halder||1561||IND||1||1||0||0||1||3,0||22||40||-63,20||U10 Girls|
|27||Indira Priyadharshini Subbu||1346||IND||1||1||0||1||0||3,0||23||40||-13,20||U10 Girls|
|33||Sachi Jain||1282||IND||1||0||1||0||1||3,0||31||40||-3,20||U10 Girls|
|38||Aswinika Mani R||1242||IND||0||1||0||1||1||3,0||39||40||0,00||U10 Girls|
|1||WFM||Savitha Shri B||2010||IND||½||1||1||0||1||3,5||18||40||-37,60||U12 Girls|
|38||Akshaya Rajaraman||1457||IND||1||0||0||1||0||2,0||58||40||-26,80||U12 Girls|
|42||Tejaswi R||1393||IND||1||0||1||0||½||2,5||43||40||-17,20||U12 Girls|
|44||Sinthia Sarkar||1384||IND||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||0,0||89||40||0,00||U12 Girls|
A special thanks to Shantharam Kadanthaly Venkatraman for sending us material from the tournament venue.