Hou Yifan Challenge Day 2: Praggnanandhaa stays perfect 9.0/9
Praggnanandhaa continued his domination as he won all four games on the second day of Julius Baer Challengers Chess Tour Hou Yifan Challenge. He is now at 9.0/9, a full two points ahead of the competition. He defeated Liang, Murzin, Kiolbasa and Mammadzada on the second day. Vincent Keymer is at sole second place 7.0/9 followed by Christopher Yoo 6.0/9. Both Leon Luke Mendonca and Aditya Mittal are at shared fifth place along with Awonder Liang 5.0/9. Vaishali scored only two draws and took her score to 3.5/9. Pragg will face Keymer in Round 11. Round 10 starts today at 7:30 p.m. IST. Photo: Amruta Mokal
Catch Pragg if one can
Praggnanandhaa continued his momentum from the previous day as he managed to win all four games of his. He seems to have no plans to slow down. The second day also witnessed eight draws, which means 75% games were decisive.
Round 6: Leon - Mammadzada: 1-0
GM Leon Luke Mendonca started the day with a win over Azerbaijan no.1 woman IM Gunay Mammadzada.
21...Be7 allows White to get back in the game. Find out how.
Praggnanandhaa - Liang: 1-0
Praggnanandhaa maneuvered his knight beautifully against Liang.
Try to figure out where does the b5-knight want to go. 18...Nc7 only helped White.
Round 7: Murzin - Praggnanandhaa: 0-1
Pragg punished IM Volodar Murzin for passive play.
White had to take on d4, 15.cxd4 Nxd4 is still good for Black. 15...b5 16.Rfc1 Qd6 17.Bf1 Rac8 18.Qe1 a5 and Black just rolls all his pawns down the board, eventually forcing White to resign after 30th move.
Round 8: Aditya - Yoo: 1-0
IM Aditya Mittal braved through difficult position, eventually IM Christopher Yoo (USA) blundered in the end, allowing his opponent to win the game.
Praggnanandhaa - Kiolbasa: 1-0
Praggnanandhaa completely outplayed his opponent WIM Oliwia Kiolbasa (POL) to score his eighth consecutive victory.
Round 9: Liang - Vaishali: 0.5-0.5
GM Awonder Liang was held to a draw by IM Vaishali. Although she was better for the major part of the game.
Mammadzada - Praggnanandhaa: 0-1
Praggnanandhaa completed his triple hat-trick with a win over Mammadzada.
39.f6 was an unnecessary pawn sacrifice as White does not get anything out of it. 39...gxf6 40.Qb1+ Kg7 41.Be2 a3 and now Black has decisive advantage.
Some interesting finishes from Day 2
Replay the Live stream
Replay all games from Round 6-9
Standings after Round 9
Every day between 18th and 21st September, the game starts at 7:30 p.m. IST.