Grandmaster Vidit Gujrathi played out a fighting draw with Bai Jinshi of China, while GM Sahaj Grover lost to defending champion Alexander Ipatov of Turkey in the third round of World junior chess championship here.

It was an English opening by Gujrathi that did not promise much hope in the middle game even as Jinshi exchanged pieces at regular intervals to retain parity. The players arrived at a queen and pawns endgame where the draw was a just result after 38 moves.

A faulty variation in the Queen’s gambit declined cost Grover dearly as he was outdone in quick time by Ipatov. Playing black, Grover made an error in the opening to allow a dangerous king side attack. Known for his fondness for attack, Ipatov pounced on the chance and reached a winning endgame that was easy to convert.

Sethuraman posts win

The other Indian GM in the fray, S.P. Sethuraman, made amends for his draw in the previous round and outplayed Ayan Akhmetov of Kazakhstan.

A sacrifice in the middle game by Sethuraman led to a winning position.

With 10 rounds still to go, Yu Yangyi of China, A.R. Salem Saleh of UAE, Duda Jan-Krzysztof of Poland and Ipatov emerged the joint leaders with a perfect score of three points.

Sethuraman, Gujrathi and Debashish Das were among those with 2.5 points each, while Grover and S.L. Narayanan have two points each.

Rakesh Kulkarni and Sameer Kathmale ended on the losing side against Jorge Cori of Peru and Temizkan Denizcan of Turkey respectively.

In the girls’ championship being played simultaneously, G.K. Monnisha continued her excellent run as she defeated Mitra Hejazipour of Iran and took her tally to 2.5 points.

Having lost in the second round, the Indian duo of Padmini Rout and Ivana Maria Furtado made a strong comeback at the expense of Fronda Jan Jodilyn of the Philippines and Laura Gueci of Italy respectively.

Important results (Indians unless specified): Third round: Antonioa Pavlidis (Gre, 2) lost to Yu Yangyi (Chn, 3); Alexander Ipatov (Tur) bt Sahaj Grover (2); A.R. Salem Saleh (UAE) bt Bortnyk Mykola (Ukr, 2): Vidit Gujrathi (2.5) drew with Bai Jinshi (Chn, 2.5); Javier Benitez Lozano (Mex, 2) lost to Duda Jan-Krzysztof (Pol, 3); Andrey Stukopin (Rus, 2.5) drew with Jahongir Vakhidov (Uzb, 2.5); Marcel Kanarek (Pol, 2.5) drew with Milovan Ratkovic (Srb, 2.5); Idani Pouya (Iri, 2.5) drew with Berkay Ozdover Mustafa (Tur, 2.5).

Ayan Akhmetov (Kaz, 1.5) lost to S.P. Sethuraman (2.5); Saiyn Zhanat (Kaz, 1.5) lost to Debashis Das (2.5); Sameer Kathmale (1) lost to Jorge Cori (Per, 2); Melih Yurtseven (Tur, 1.5) drew with N. Srinath (1.5); S.L. Narayanan (2) bt Temur Igonin (Uzb, 1); Temizkan Denizcan (Tur, 1.5) bt Rakesh Kulkarni (0.5).

Girls: Monica Sihite Chelsie (Ina, 2) lost to Aleksandra Goryachkina (Rus, 3); Zhansaya Abdumalik (Kaz, 2.5) drew with Irina Bulmaga (Rou, 2.5): Nguyen Thi Mai Hung (Vie, 2.5) drew with Dinara Saduakassova (Kaz, 2.5); Ekaterini Pavlidou (Gre, 2) lost to Zhai Mo (Chn, 3); Maria Bezgodova (Rus, 2) lost to Aulia Medina Warda (Ina, 3); J. Saranya (1.5) lost to Alina Kashlinskaya (Rus, 2.5).

Mitra Hejazipour (Iri, 1.5) lost to G.K. Monnisha (2.5); Padmini Rout (2) bt Fronda Jan Jodilyn (Phi, 1); Barbara Juhasz (Hun, 2) bt Riya Savant (1); Rucha Pujari (1.5) drew with Lena Armas (Fra, 1.5); Shristi Shetty (1.5) drew with Maria Gevorgyan (Arm, 1.5); Ivana Maria Furtado (2) bt Laura Gueci (Ita, 1); Anjana Krishna (1) bt Nur Guney Gamze (Tur, 0).

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