Grandmaster S Arun Prasad crashed through the defenses of Yuri Solodovnichenko of Ukraine to emerge as joint leader on 6.5 points after the end of the 8th and penultimate round of Grand Europe Golden Sands chess tournament here.
Prasad shares the lead with Vladimir Georgiev of Macedonia, Zybnyk Hracek of Czech Republic and Nils Grandelius of Sweden. The four leaders are followed by a pack of 15 players having six points apiece including Indian Grandmasters Abhijeet Gupta, M R Venkatesh, Deep Sengupta, Vidit Gujrathi, International Master Ashwin Jayaram and Indian women champion Mary Ann Gomes.
On what turned out to be an excellent day for Prasad, the English opening gave him a decent advantage as white and Solodovnichenko suffered once white got a bind on the king side.
Arun Prasad scored in the endgame making no mistakes with his extra material.PTI