Aakanksha Hagawane of Maharashtra defeated the higher rated Arpita Mukherjee of West Bengal in a lopsided encounter to snatch sole lead at the end of the penultimate round in the National under-13 girls’ chess championship here on Sunday.
Aakanksha went on a pawn hunt with black pieces and the three extra pawns came in handy to win the rook and minor piece ending after 64 moves. Aakanksha is on 8.5 points.
Three players, R. Vaishali, Riya Savant and Bidhar Rutumbara are in second spot with 7.5 points.
Top seed Vaishali of Chennai lost a pawn but recovered to win a rook for minor piece and checkmate overnight joint leader Priyanka of Coimbatore on move 49.
Abhimanyu Puranik and Harsha Bharathakoti are leading the Open section with eight points.
Abhimanyu won a pawn in an unusual brilliant tactic on move 22 to defeat Grahesh in a well fought 64-move knight ending.
Harsha Bharthakoti as black exploited the weak pawn structure of Hirthickkesh to win material and the game in 45 moves.
Undefeated players, Abhimanyu and Harsha jointly lead with eight points.
Another undefeated player, Raghunandan is on 7.5 points and has title chances in the final round on Monday due to his higher tie-break score.
The other players on 7.5 points include: Kumar Gaurav, Mitrabha Guha, S. Dhananjay, A. Harikrishnan.
The results (round ten):
Boys: Abhimanyu Puranik (Mah) 8 bt Y. Grahesh (AP) 7; P. Hirthickkesh (TN) 7 lost to Harsha Bharathakoti (AP) 8.
S. Dhananjay (Cg) 7.5 drew with K.S. Raghunandan (Kar) 7.5; Barat Kalyan (TN) 7 lost to Mitrabha Guha (WB) 7.5; Kumar Gaurav (Bih) 7.5 bt S. Jayakumar (TN) 6.5.
Girls: Arpita Mukherjee (WB) 6.5 lost to Aakanksha Hagawane (Mah) 8.5; R. Vaishali (TN) 7.5 bt K. Priyanka (TN) 7.5; Bidhar Rutumbara (Odi) 7 drew with Riya Savant (Goa) 7.5.
Tejaswini Sagar (Mah) 6.5 drew with S. Ananya (Kar) 6.5; N.G. Sneha (Pud) 6 lost to Hilmi Parveen (Ker) 7; Chitlange Sakshi (Mah) 6 lost to Harshita Guddanti (AP) 7.