World Youth Olympiad Round 9: India Red beats Russia!
by Sagar Shah - 18/12/2017
It was a thrilling final round. Russian team who had already won the gold medal and had a score of 16.0/16 were surprisingly beaten by the India Red team! This didn't change the final standings but it was surely a moral victory for the India Red team. Silver was won by India Green who beat Kazakhstan by a margin of 3.5-0.5. Iran won the bronze medal. In this report we bring to you all the action of round 9 with interviews of many top players.
Russia wins the Gold, India Green take home the silver
The news of the day is that Russia, who had already won the gold medal with one round to spare, slumped to their first defeat against India Red! The Russian team had a perfect score with 16.0/16. Going into the last round sixth seeded India Red had only 10.0 points out of 16. "We were quite tensed, as a loss would push us out of top ten finish," says Mitrabha Guha, board number four of India Red. No one gave the Indian team a chance to beat the mighty Russians. But they proved all the detractors wrong by winning the match with a score of 2.5-1.5.
India Red team playing on the top board against Russia
The floodgates were opened when Arjun Erigiasi won a 23-move miniature against Timur Fakhrutdinov. Perhaps, the Russian player resigned a bit too soon, but playing on would have just prolonged the suffering. It was a fine win for the soft-spoken boy from Tanjore.
A consistent performer for India in the under-16 age category - Arjun Erigiasi
Arjun Erigiasi speaks about his win over Timur Fakhrutdinov
Jayakumaar made a quick draw against Lobanov. Rajdeep lost on the top board against Lomasov. The onus was now on Mitrabha's shoulders to bring home the full point. He was facing Alexandra Obolentseva. Mitrabha played an exciting game and his opponent blundered under time pressure.
The hero for the India Red team - Mitrabha Guha
0 - 1
½ - ½
1 - 0
1 - 0
The loss was a moral victory for the India Red team and it also helped them to finish fifth. For Russians it didn't matter as they still go back home with the gold, but it would have been nice to go home unbeaten. The way things stand no team in the tournament remained unbeaten.
In a very magnanimous gesture by the organizers, the round was inaugurated by the arbiters
The arbiters who work hard throughout the day, got their due. They were asked to inaugurate the final round of the event.
Start of round 9 with commentary
India Green team played a fine final round against Kazakhstan. Aryan Chopra was rested for the last game. Pragg played on the top board and drew his game. Nihal was able to fool his opponent and bring home the full point. Iniyan continued his amazing form and won his game and Vaishali also ensured that she won on the final board. A thoroughly convincing 3.5-0.5 victory over Kazakhstan.
And we thought that chairs were meant for sitting! Pragg and Nihal in their favourite frog pose!
Coach Prasenjit Dutta congratulates Nihal for the win, while his manager Priyadarshan Banjan is confused as to how Nihal won so soon
Nihal won the gold medal on third board
Iniyan played a fantastic tournament and scored 7.5/8 to win the gold medal on 4th board
P. Iniyan scored 7.5/8 on board four for the India green team and won the individual gold. At the same time he helped the team secure a silver medal. He was thoroughly pleased with his 94.7% score. In examinations in school he scores something around 60% (after just 2 days of studying). This is something that he would like to keep rather than excelling at studies and letting his chess results go down!
Iniyan speaks to ChessBase India
Vaishali chipped in when the team needed her the most. She scored 3.5/4 and bagged the silver medal on the reserve board
India green team happy to win the silver! Check out the naughty Pragg!
India Blue fought hard, but lost 2.5-1.5 against Kazakhstan