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Indian-Lion GM Arjun Erigaisi Roars again

by Shahid Ahmed - 15/04/2020

Indian-Lion - GM Arjun Erigaisi scored 8.0/9 to win 4th Saturday Online Blitz Open. He finished a half point ahead of the competition. Three players finished at 7.5/9, they are GM Jakhongir Vakhidov of Uzbekistan, GM Raunak Sadhwani and Pranav V. They were placed second, third and fourth respectively according to their tie-break score. The third edition of the weekly tournament witnessed the participation of 196 players comprising of 12 GMs, 23 IMs, 3 WGMs and 5 WIMs from India, Algeria, Bangladesh, Colombia, England, France, Romania, Singapore, USA and Uzbekistan. Diptayan maintained his lead of the Circuit standings at 28 points. GM Arjun Erigaisi jumped to second spot with 20 points, this was also his second Saturday Online Open triumph. GM Raunak Sadhwani is at third place with 18 points. The 5th Saturday Online Blitz Open will take place this Saturday 18th April. Photo: Puneet Jaiswal

Arjun Erigaisi wins Saturday Online Blitz for the second time

GM Arjun Erigaisi scored 8.0/9, finished a half point ahead of the remaining podium finishers to win 4th Saturday Online Blitz Open. Arjun had already won the 2nd edition two weeks before winning the 4th edition. GM Jakhongir Vakhidov of Uzbekistan, GM Raunak Sadhwani and Pranav V, all three of them finished at 7.5/9 each and they were placed second, third and fourth respectively. With this win Arjun has brought himself closer to winning the Circuit. Diptayan currently leads the Circuit standings with 28 points followed by GM Arjun Erigaisi at 20 points and GM Raunak Sadhwani at 18 points. Praggnanandhaa went out of the Circuit contention as he had to miss the fourth edition due to prior commitments. With this win GM Arjun Erigaisi currently has the highest number of ChessBase India Online Blitz Open victories at four.

Champion of Saturday Online Blitz Open once again GM Arjun Erigaisi | Photo: Puneet Jaiswal

The MBA chase by Mbachez90

17-year old Indian-Lion (GM Arjun Erigaisi) is far from MBA but his opponent Mbachez90 (IM P Saravana Krishnan) got him in vice grip which he could not maintain for long in Round 4.

Mbachez90 - Indian-Lion, Round 4

Find out the correct continuation after 24...Nxe5

Despite having a stronghold for the better part of the middlegame, white was unable to make the correct recapture. Well maybe things could have turned out differently. We always need to remember that all these were played with 3 mins each with no increment, so it is very much possible that both players were short on time.

Uzbek Tiger hunts Indian-Lion

Uzbektiger95 (GM Jakhongir Vakhidov) was the only one to beat Indian-Lion. After declining a draw offer as early as move number nine, Arjun continued the game and eventually reached to a seemingly equal Rook-Bishop vs. Rook-Knight endgame.

Indian-Lion - Uzbektiger95, Round 6

Position after 41..Nc3

After playing 40.Kg1 Ne2+ and repeating the position once, White declined the repetition draw and continued with 42.Re5+. Anyway this loss did not affect Arjun, but it helped his opponent Vakhidov secure second position eventually.

Indian-Lion was too strong for Babysnake's venom

Babysnake (IM Mitrabha Guha) tried to create some trouble for Indian-Lion by forcing his king out in the open. In reality, Black's king was never in any real danger, well except for once where white had some half-chance which he needed to seize to stir up some real danger.

Babysnake - Indian-Lion, Round 7

Position after 14...Kd6

White continued the game with 15.c5+ which is incorrect and eventually white lost the game. Can you find the better continuation?

The Devil Slayer

In the final round, Indian-Lion made a short work of Devil1234 (GM Raunak Sadhwani). Make no mistake Raunak is a strong blitz player and he finished at third position despite losing the last round game.

Indian-Lion - Devil1234, Round 9

Find out the best continuation for white after 24.Rdf8

Tiger had a shaky start against Man of Mass

Uzbekistan no.5 GM Jakhongir Vokhidov | Photo:

Uzbektiger95 (GM Jakhongir Vakhidov) had a shaky start against ManofMass (Vignesh B) in the opening round of the tournament.

Uzbektiger95 - ManofMass, Round 1

Find out the best continuation for black after 26.Nf4

Vignesh missed a golden opportunity as he opted for 26...Rc2+ which allowed his opponent to save the day with 27.Kg1. Can you find out what did black miss here?

Baby snake loosened grip on the Tiger

In Round 5, Uzbektiger95 faced Babysnake (IM Mitrabha Guha). For the better part of the game, White was in firm control. Even the opposite color bishop endgame was also winning for white, until he locked the position into a draw.

Uzbektiger95 - Babysnake, Round 5

Find out white's winning plan after 45...h6

White had an easy winning continuation here after 45...h6, however he missed it and continued the game with 46.h3

Position after 59.Kf4

This position is easy for black to hold a draw. There is only thing white can do to make a breakthrough, black needs to remember that plan and make sure that is covered.

Find out why 62...Kd4 is a blunder

Black just needed to stop white's one idea, unfortunately for black 62...Kd4 just allows that. Try to figure out where did black go wrong.

Devil bests Tiger

In the seventh round, Uzbektiger95 lost his only game of the event against Devil1234 (GM Raunak Sadhwani). Despite having a better position for the majority of the Double Rook endgame, the game liquidated into a drawn Rook ending.

Devil1234 - Uzbektiger95, Round 7

Position after 54.h4

Black continued with 54...Rg6 and eventually lost the game. Find out why it is a mistake and what black should have played to save the game.

A Strange victory

STRANGE (IM Aronyak Ghosh) completely played out of his element and lost in a miniature like 19 moves when checkmate threat became unstoppable in the penultimate round.

Uzbektiger95 - STRANGE, Round 8

Position after 16...Bxd4

Of course in a position like this black should not play 16...Bxd4 which is completely against the sanctity of the dark-squared bishop. Black must have missed the intermezzo 18.Bf6 which was the decider of the game.

A VIP draw

Uzbektiger95 was having a completely winning position against Pranav_vip (Pranav V) in the final round, but somehow he misplayed completely and allowed his opponent to get back in the game and equalize.

Pranav_vip - Uzbektiger95, Round 9

Position after 35.Rb6

Almost any move should lead to a victory for black here, but after a few moves, the game liquidated into an equal Queen endgame where draw became the obvious outcome.

The Devil had the Hitter's number

India's 65th GM Raunak Sadhwani finished third | Photo: Amruta Mokal

Devil1234 (GM Raunak Sadhwani) had a topsy-turvy game against Hitter1999 (GM Aravindh Chithambaram) in the third round. Despite being a completely difficult position, Devil1234 somehow managed to capitalize on his opponent's mistake to register a victory.

Hitter1999 - Devil1234, Round 3

Find out the best move for black after 29.f3

Position after 47.Rb1

Black is ahead in material and completely winning, however White decided to fight till the end.

Position after 62...Nd3+

Black making a few mistakes allowed white to chip away the pawns one by one. The final nail in the coffin was 62...Nd3+ as that proved to be too difficult for black to overcome.

Final Standings

The top 17 finishers

Complete standings

Circuit Standings

Circuit standings after 4th Saturday Online Blitz Open 2020

Replay all games

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