Candidates: Gukesh makes the right moves to pull alongside Nepo at top : The Tribune India

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Candidates: Gukesh makes the right moves to pull alongside Nepo at top

Candidates: Gukesh makes the right moves to pull alongside Nepo at top

D Gukesh and Ian Nepomniachtchi battled it out for six hours. fide



PTI

Toronto, April 10

Grandmaster D Gukesh grabbed a share of the lead alongside Russia’s Ian Nepomniachtchi by becoming the only Indian to post a win in the fifth round of the Candidates chess tournament, outwitting Azerbaijan’s Nijat Abasov in a hard-fought contest here.

With nine rounds to go in the double round-robin event, the 17-year-old Gukesh and Nepomniachtchi share the top spot with 3.5 points and are followed by top-seeded American Fabio Caruana who is half-a-point behind.

American Hikaru Nakamura was the other winner on the day against Firouzja Alireza of France, while Indian teen R Praggnanandhaa played out a draw with overnight sole leader Nepomniachtchi.

Vidit Gujrathi also put an end to his losses by settling for a draw with Caruana.

Praggnanandhaa and Nakamura share the fourth spot with 2.5 points followed closely by Gujrathi on two points. Alireza and Abasov share the last position on 1.5 points apiece.

In the women’s competition, nothing changed in terms of standings with all the four games

ending in draws.

Praggnanandhaa’s sister R Vaishali could not dent the defence of Anna Muzychuk and Koneru Humpy recovered with a draw against Aleksandra Goryachkina of Russia.

Tournament leader Zhongyi Tan of China was held to a draw by an improved Nurgyul Salimova of Bulgaria as Russian Kateryna Lagno signed peace with Tingjie Lei of China.

Tan remained in front following the drawing melee with 3.5 points and Goryachkina moved up to 3 points to remain right behind the leader.

Lagno, Vaishali and Salimova shared the third spot with 2.5 points, half-a-point ahead of Humpy, Muzychuk and Lei.

Gukesh in joint lead

Gukesh started off with the king’s pawn and faced the Petrov defence.

The Indian ensured a complex middle game and had an edge right till the time the players hit the first time control. However, on the 40th move, Gukesh erred and what seemed like a walk-in-the-park became a tough game.

Abasov fought hard and was close to a draw by the 80th move but a blunder by the Azerbaijani on the 83rd turned it decisively in Gukesh’s favour with an extra pawn in the queen and pawn endgame.

The game lasted 87 moves and went on for a marathon six hours.

#Canada #Chess #Russia #Toronto


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