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National Teams 01: shaky yet solid

by Priyadarshan Banjan - 09/02/2016

The National Teams Championship kicked off here at Bhubaneshwar with top organisations like PSPB and Railways sending strong teams in order to win this thirty-sixth edition. There are two sections -- Open and Women. The Open has eleven grandmasters and seventeen International Masters, meanwhile the Women's section has four International Masters and three Women Grand Masters and is being conducted at the KIIT law College in Bhubaneshwar, Orissa. We bring you an illustrated report.

National Teams 01: shaky yet solid

The 36th National Team Championship 2016 was off to a shaky yet woozily solid start as a handful of higher seeded players of the top teams were in trouble against their unfancied opponents; however, not many notable upsets were witnessed.


There are two sections -- Open and Women. The Open has eleven grandmasters and seventeen International Masters, meanwhile the Women's section has four International Masters and three Women Grand Masters and is being conducted at the KIIT Law College in Bhubaneshwar, Orissa.


The Petroleum Sports Promotion Board (PSPB) has sent a strong team that looks likely to win both the Open and the Women's event, but we will focus on the paranormal occurrences that occurred in the first round.

Air India's IM Swayams Mishra starts the tournament as the top board for his team, but he played a very strange game... he was White here, and it is Black to play!

Even more baffling is what happened after this:

[Event "Indian National Team Chess Championship-"]
[Site "Bhubaneswar"]
[Date "2016.02.08"]
[Round "1"]
[White "Swayams, Mishra"]
[Black "Rabindra, Kumar Ojha"]
[Result "1/2-1/2"]
[WhiteElo "2478"]
[BlackElo "1821"]
[PlyCount "119"]
[EventDate "2016.??.??"]
[Source "MonRoi"]
1. d4 Nf6 2. c4 g6 3. Nc3 Bg7 4. e4 d6 5. Nf3 O-O 6. Be2 e5 7. O-O Nc6 8. d5
Ne7 9. Ne1 Nd7 10. Be3 f5 11. f3 f4 12. Bf2 g5 13. a4 Ng6 14. a5 Nf6 15. c5 Rf7
16. cxd6 cxd6 17. Nb5 g4 18. Nxa7 g3 19. Bb6 gxh2+ 20. Kh1 Qe7 21. Nxc8 Rxc8
22. Rc1 Rff8 23. Nd3 Nh5 24. Bf2 Bf6 25. Kxh2 Bh4 26. Rh1 Bxf2 27. Nxf2 Ng3 28.
Re1 Qh4+ 29. Nh3 Nh5 30. Qd2 Qg3+ 31. Kh1 Nh4 32. Bf1 Qxh3+ 33. Kg1 Qg3 34. Qf2
Qg5 35. Bb5 Nf6 36. b4 Kh8 37. Bf1 Rg8 38. b5 Nd7 39. a6 bxa6 40. bxa6 Nc5 41.
Rc3 Rc7 42. Ra3 Ra7 43. Rb1 Qd8 44. Rb2 Rg3 45. Qe1 Nxf3+ 46. Rxf3 Rxf3 47.
gxf3 Nxa6 48. Bxa6 Rxa6 49. Qb1 Ra8 50. Rg2 Rb8 51. Qe1 Qb6+ 52. Kh2 Rg8 53.
Rxg8+ Kxg8 54. Qh4 Qc7 55. Qg5+ Qg7 56. Qd8+ Qf8 57. Qg5+ Kh8 58. Kh1 Qb8 59.
Qf6+ Kg8 60. Qg5+ 1/2-1/2


Yes, it actually happened! 32...Qxh3! and White is just a piece down.

Swayams' opponent Rabindra Kumar Ojha (1821) won't be happy with his performance after earning the piece.

His team-mate IM Srinath Narayanan (2469) rose from a suspicious position to finish the game in style

Although not winning, White has only one way to stay in the game. One good thing about making surprising moves is that your opponent often loses the balance and blunders!
[Event "Indian National Team Chess Championship-"]
[Site "Bhubaneswar"]
[Date "2016.02.08"]
[Round "1"]
[White "Narayanan, Srinath"]
[Black "Mahitosh, Dey"]
[Result "1-0"]
[WhiteElo "2469"]
[BlackElo "1686"]
[PlyCount "93"]
[EventDate "2016.??.??"]
[Source "MonRoi"]
1. e4 e5 2. Nf3 Nc6 3. Bc4 Bc5 4. c3 Nf6 5. d3 O-O 6. O-O d6 7. Bg5 Bg4 8. h3
Bh5 9. g4 Bg6 10. Nbd2 h6 11. Bh4 Qe7 12. a4 a5 13. Kh2 Nd8 14. Rg1 Ne6 15. Nf1
Nf4 16. Ne3 c6 17. g5 Qd7 18. Qf1 hxg5 19. Bxg5 N6h5 20. Nh4 d5 21. Bb3 Kh7 22.
Rd1 d4 23. Ng4 f6 24. Bxf4 Nxf4 25. Nxg6 Nxg6 26. Qg2 Nf4 27. Qg3 g5 28. Qf3
Kg6 29. h4 Rh8 30. Nxe5+ fxe5 31. Rxg5+ Kf6 32. Qg3 Qh7 (32... Raf8 {as
necessary to protect the f7 square.}) 33. Rf5+ Ke7 34. Qg5+ Kd7 35. Rf7+ Qxf7
36. Bxf7 Be7 37. Qf5+ Kd6 38. Rh1 dxc3 39. bxc3 Rh6 40. d4 Rah8 41. Qxe5+ Kd7
42. Qf5+ Kd8 43. Qxf4 Rxh4+ 44. Kg3 Rxh1 45. Qb8+ Kd7 46. Qxb7+ Kd8 47. Be6 1-0


 Orissa's top coach Rajendra Kumar Sahu (2038) of Master Chess Foundation-A held IM Arghyadip Das (2442) of Railways to an uneventful draw 

PSPB Women's team was too strong for LIC -- IM Padmini Rout (2420) destroyed...

...WGM Kiran Manisha Mohanty (2165) in the top board.

White is just losing here after...?
[Event "Indian National Team Chess Championship-"]
[Site "Bhubaneswar"]
[Date "2016.02.08"]
[Round "1"]
[White "Kiran, Manisha Mohanty"]
[Black "Padmini, Rout"]
[Result "0-1"]
[WhiteElo "2165"]
[BlackElo "2420"]
[PlyCount "46"]
[EventDate "2016.??.??"]
[Source "MonRoi"]
1. e4 c5 2. Nf3 e6 3. d4 cxd4 4. Nxd4 Nc6 5. Nb5 d6 6. c4 a6 7. N5c3 Nf6 8. Be2
b6 9. O-O Bb7 10. Be3 Be7 11. Na3 Ne5 12. Qd4 O-O 13. f3 Ned7 14. Bf2 Re8 15.
Kh1 Rc8 16. Rad1 d5 17. e5 Bc5 18. Qf4 Qc7 19. cxd5 exd5 20. Bh4 Bxa3 21. Bxf6
Nxf6 22. bxa3 Qxc3 23. exf6 Rxe2 0-1


However, the player to watch keenly will always be this legend!

Of course, White is winning, but Viji found a crystal-clear way to take home the point with a typical 'destroying the defender' tactic.
[Event "Indian National Team Chess Championship-"]
[Site "Bhubaneswar"]
[Date "2016.02.08"]
[Round "1"]
[White "Vijayalakshmi, Subbaraman"]
[Black "Bidhar, Rutumbara"]
[Result "1-0"]
[WhiteElo "2382"]
[BlackElo "1828"]
[SetUp "1"]
[FEN "r1bq2k1/1p3pbp/p1p1r1p1/3n4/2N5/4B1P1/PP2PPBP/R1QR2K1 w - - 0 15"]
[PlyCount "9"]
[EventDate "2016.??.??"]
[Source "MonRoi"]
15. Nb6 Rxe3 16. Qxe3 Qxb6 17. Rxd5 Qxe3 18. Rd8+ Bf8 19. fxe3 1-0


Viji about to behead the ...Nd5.

Airport Authority of India's GM Shyam Sundar M. too had a close call as his opponent simply missed a mate in two! 

Five-year-old Sadbhav Rautela is the second board for Team Uttarakhand!

Niklesh Kumar Jain (2015) of Madhya Pradesh is a player, teacher, reporter and sometimes, even manager!

 Bihar's big hope Kumar Gaurav (2232) recently made an IM norm in Chennai and is a player to observe.

 The KIIT Law College, host to this prestigious tournament


 Chess can be brutal this kid learnt, as she resigned with tears in her eyes.

 Sometimes, chess can be confusing to the most experienced of the players.

But as IM M.S. Thejkumar (2429) Railways-B and...

 ...and IM Karthikeyan P. (2462) of Railways-A would tell you, chess is mental torture.

 Gujarat is led by GM Ankit Rajpara (2491), but you should also keep an eye on Manush Shah (2066).

The Kerala Boys. Now, look at your far right...


 ...the legendary Abdul Majeed (1866) is a 64-year-old veteran who has beaten among others, people like Vishy Anand and Pravin Thipsay.

View the Pairings for Open Round 02 here.

View the Pairings for Women Round 02 here.

Photos for Chessbase India

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