13-year-old is taking India's strongest rapid event by storm
The top seed is Vidit Gujrathi, then we have Sethuraman, after that Abhijeet Gupta, Deep Sengupta, Aravindh Chithambaram, Karthikeyan Murali, the list of super strong GMs playing at the ChessMine Rapid is almost never ending! But guess who is leading the tournament with a score of 6.0/6? 13-year-old Nihal Sarin! The boy from Kerala was on fire at the first day as he showcased some brilliant chess to shoot into joint lead along with G.N. Gopal and Girish Koushik. We have the day one report from India's strongest ever Rapid Rating tournament.
466 players from all over the country are participating. 15 Grand Masters, Two Women Grand Masters, 25 International Masters and three Women International Masters are in the fray to win the ChessMine rapid tournament 2017. This is the strongest ever rapid rated chess tournament that has ever happened on Indian soil.
On a day that witnessed the downfall of most of the top seeds one way or the other, Grandmaster G. N. Gopal was the only one among the top thirty rated to remain unscathed. Gopal, Nihal and local lad Girish Koushik share the lead with six points apiece at the end of the opening day of this Rs. 4,50,000/- prize money tournament.
The star of the day however was Nihal, as the 68th seed in a field of over 450 participants, played his moves in the most outstanding manner and among his victims were Grandmaster RR Laxman, Gahan M.G, Sai Krishna G.V and Deepan Chakkravarthy in the sixth round.
Girish Koushik also showed sublime form and proved why he is hailed as Karnataka's super talent by outwitting grandmaster Deep Sengupta and IM Satyapragyan. G.N.Gopal has been clinical in beating strong rapid players like Nubairshah Sheikh and Abhimanyu Puranik, but his real testwill begin from tomorrow as he takes on Nihal Sarin in the seventh round.
The star attraction top seed Grandmaster Vidit Gujrathi started the day on a positive note but could not maintain the same momentum. Ranked in the top fifty in world ranking in Classical chess, Vidit first faced a challenge from Tamilnadu star GM Aravind Chithambaram and drew in the fourth round and then in the sixth lost to Delhi’s Hemant Sharma.
Vidit Gujrathi was not the only one to realise that the faster version of the game carries greater pitfalls. Grandmaster Abhijeet Gupta, National blitz champion R R Laxman, GM Sahaj Grover and GM Pravin Thipsay all find themselves in a similar boat on 4.5 points each and are in a must win situation in the remaining games for a podium finish.
With three leaders at the helm and just four rounds remaining, the final day of the rapid on Sunday is expected to be a mouth-watering contest between some of the best players in our country.
Rank after Round 6
|3||34||IM||Girish A. Koushik||IND||2319||6,0||0,0||20,5||17,0|
|4||35||FM||Rathanvel V S||IND||2319||5,5||0,0||21,0||17,5|
|5||38||GM||Aravindh Chithambaram Vr.||IND||2296||5,5||0,0||20,5||17,5|
|6||28||Hemant Sharma (del)||IND||2335||5,5||0,0||20,5||17,0|
|7||37||IM||Rajesh V A V||IND||2301||5,5||0,0||20,0||16,5|
|8||13||GM||Deepan Chakkravarthy J.||IND||2452||5,0||0,0||24,0||21,0|
|11||26||Gahan M G||IND||2345||5,0||0,0||22,0||18,0|
|12||30||IM||Mohammad Nubairshah Shaikh||IND||2331||5,0||0,0||21,5||18,5|
|16||24||FM||Sai Krishna G V||IND||2369||5,0||0,0||21,0||17,5|
|20||32||IM||Prasad Devaki V||IND||2327||5,0||0,0||20,5||17,0|
Round 7 on 2017/08/06 at 10:00am
|1||68||FM||Nihal Sarin||2032||6||6||GM||Gopal G.N.||2538||5|
|2||28||Hemant Sharma (del)||2335||5½||6||IM||Girish A. Koushik||2319||34|
|3||35||FM||Rathanvel V S||2319||5½||5½||IM||Rajesh V A V||2301||37|
|4||3||IM||Swayams Mishra||2569||5||5½||GM||Aravindh Chithambaram Vr.||2296||38|
|5||2||GM||Sethuraman S.P.||2600||5||5||GM||Karthikeyan Murali||2328||31|
|6||7||GM||Sengupta Deep||2529||5||5||IM||Prasad Devaki V||2327||32|
|7||46||Nirmal E P||2238||5||5||GM||Kunte Abhijit||2460||11|
|8||12||IM||Rathnakaran K.||2454||5||5||IM||Ravi Teja S.||2291||39|
|9||40||FM||Sadhwani Raunak||2269||5||5||GM||Deepan Chakkravarthy J.||2452||13|
|10||48||IM||Kathmale Sameer||2217||5||5||IM||Karthikeyan P.||2429||15|