Sahaj Grover beats Ukranian GM to jump to joint 2nd spot
Al Ain (UAE): Talented Indian GM Sahaj Grover continued his dream run at the Al Ain Classic international chess tournament defeating GM Evgenij Miroshnichenko of Ukraine to move upto joint joint second spot after the completion of the 7th round, here today.
With his second victory against a GM with an ELO rating of 2600, Grover took his tally to 5.5 points out of a possible seven and emerged as the best performing Indian so far with just two rounds to left in one of the strongest competitions in the Asian continent.
After outplaying Constantin Lupulescu of Romania through a king side attack, Grover outwitted Miroshnichenko with another attack but this time the Ukrainian was outfoxed from a position of strength with white pieces.
The English opening led to complexities that Grover thought gave him attacking possibilities but in fact it was the opposite.
Mirochnichenko however did not realise it and before he knew it, it was an avalanche of black pieces attacking his king till such time he compromised with a rook sacrifice for a minor piece. Even after the trade of queens, the attack continued and Grover wrapped it up in just 36 moves.
At the top of the tables, Gaioz Migalidze of Georgia continued with his impressive run and held top seed Yuriy Kryvoruchko of Ukraine to a draw.
The Georgian remained in sole lead following another impressive performance on six points and he is now trailed by as many as six players a half point behind.
Kryvoruchko leads the pack of six in second spot along with Tigran Petrosian of Armenia, Sergei Zhigalko of Belarus, Alexander Onsichuk of Ukraine, Sergey Volkov of Russia and Grover who all have 5.5 points each.
Indian GM Vidit Gujrathi, Sandipan Chanda, Deep Sengupta, G N Gopal and V Vishnu Prasanna share the seventh spot on five points each with nine others and still in with a chance for a podium finish if they do well in the remaining two rounds of this 11000 USD first prize tournament.
Gujrathi was held to a draw by Luka Paichadze of Georgia while Gopal continued to be in fine form by holding Alexakder Areshchenko of Ukraine to a draw.
Chanda was held to a draw by young Azeri Nijat Abasov while Sengupta signed peace with Samuel Chankland of United States. Vishnu Prasanna secured his fourth straight victory in the tournament, defeating compatriot Ankit Rajpara.
Among other Indians in the fray, defending champion Grandmaster Abhijeet Gupta raised visions of an improved finish after a lacklustre show thus far in the tournament. After two back to back losses, Gupta however came up with some imaginative manoeuvres to beat talented Zhansaya Abdumalik of Kazakhstan.