India stuns China to qualify for Chess Olympiad quarters


Chennai, August 23

R Praggnanandhaa and Divya Deshmukh starred with essential wins as India shocked a formidable China 4-2 within the ninth and last preliminary spherical to make the quarterfinals of the FIDE Online Chess Olympiad on Sunday.

The Indian group, which completed on the prime of Top Division Pool ‘A’, will play the quarterfinals in opposition to a yet-to-be-decided opponent on August 28.

Four attracts and two wins on Under-20 boards helped India pull off the victory in opposition to the Chinese.

The 15-year-old Praggnanandhaa seemed to be on the ropes, however managed to show the tables on Liu Yan and completed with an ideal 6/6 rating.

Divya Deshmukh, a former world under-10 and 12 champion, put it throughout Jiner Zhu to underline her potential.

Vidit Gujrathi, the Indian captain, held world No.3 Ding Liren to a creditable draw on the highest board whereas P Harikrishna additionally shared honours with Yangyi Yu.

Indian ace Koneru Humpy signed peace with the ladies’s world No.1 Yifan Hou as did D Harika in opposition to the present world champion Wenjun Ju.

India claimed the highest spot in Pool A with 17 factors and 39.5 board factors and have become the primary group to qualify for the quarterfinals.

India No.2 Harikrishna mentioned he was delighted with the win over China and credited the kids—Praggnanandhaa and Divya.

The pool winner advances on to the quarterfinals whereas the second third-placed group from every of the 4 swimming pools transfer to the preliminary part of the knockout.

Earlier within the seventh spherical, India posted a 4-2 win over Georgia with former world champ Viswanathan Anand being held to a draw by Levan Pantsulaia.

In the eighth spherical, India registered a snug 4.5-1.5 win over Germany with captain Vidit Gujrathi main the best way by beating Rasmus Svane.

Results: Round 7: India beat Georgia 4-2 (Viswanathan Anand drew with Levan Pantsulaia; P Harikrishna beat Luka Paichadze; Konery Humpy drew with Meri Arabidze; D Harika misplaced to Nino Batsiashvili; R Praggnanandhaa beat Nikolozi Kacharava; Divya Deshmukh beat Diana Lomaia).

Round 8: India beat Germany 4.5-1.5 (Vidit Santosh Gujrathi beat Rasmus Svane; Harikrishna drew with Matthias Bluebaum; D Harika drew with Lara Schulze; Bhakti Kulkarni beat Filiz Osmanodja; Nihal Sarin drew with Roven Vogel; Vantika Agrwal beat Jana Schneider).

Round 9: India beat China 4-2 (Vidit Gujrathi drew with Ding Liren; Harikrishna drew with Yangyi Yu; Humpy drew with Hou Yifan; D Harika drew with Wenjun Ju; R Praggnanandhaa beat Yan Liu; Divya Deshmukh beat Jiner Zhu).

Final standings: Pool A: 1. India 17 factors, 2. China  16, 3. Germany 11, 4. Iran 9, 5-6. Mongolia & Georgia 8, 7. Indonesia 8, 8. Uzbekistan 7, 9. Vietnam 6, 10. Zimbabwe 0. — PTI



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