Chennai: Top seed Sahaj Grover of Delhi used his experience to defeat Yashas of Karnataka in the seventh round and wrest sole lead in the National under-11 chess championship being played at the Sri Ramachandra Medical College on Wednesday.
Sahaj is leading with full seven points and is followed half a point behind by Vian D'Cunha of Karnataka. The third place is shared by five players with six points: Yashas (Kar), Fenil Shah (Guj), G.V. Sai Krishna (AP), Niraj Saripalli (Goa) and Y.V.K. Chakravarthy (AP).
In a Rossolimo attack, Sahaj played black and was passive, only defending the position. In the queen and knight ending he swung his queen into enemy territory to cause damage to the white pawn structure. Yashas suffered his first defeat in 49 moves.
Vian D'Cunha of Karnataka benefited from the poor opening of Dheeraj Kumar (AP) and won two pawns. Vian used this material and black's uncastled king to win a rook and minor pieces ending on the 57th turn and move to clear second place.
S.S. Manigandan of Madurai shocked K. Vijaykanth of Andhra Pradesh with the black pieces in 100 moves.
Srinidhi beats Priyanka
Tamil Nadu's Srinidhi Nagarajan of Salem got the better of overnight leader Priyanka Kumari (Jha) in the girl's section. Srinidhi joined Priyanka in the lead with six points after registering a 26-move victory. Michelle Catherina, Dharani Sree, J. Vaishnavi (all TN) and Mahaswetha Kumar (Asm) are in the second place with 5.5 points.
Four rounds remain to be played. Two rounds are slated for Thursday and the competition concludes on November 11.
Leading results (seventh round): Boys: Yashas (Kar) 6 lost to Sahaj Grover (Del) 7; Vian D'Cunha (Kar) 6.5 bt Dheeraj Kumar (AP) 5.5; Fenil Shah (Guj) 6 bt Vaibhav Suri (Del) 5; G.V. Sai Krishna (AP) 6 bt N. Rajkumar (TN) 5; N. Kathirvel (Pon) 5 lost to Niraj Saripalli (Goa) 6; Yogesh Gautam (Har) 5 lost to Y.V.K. Chakravarthy (AP) 6; K. Vijaykanth (AP) 4.5 lost to S.S. Manigandan (TN) 5.5; M. Aubhropratin (Ben) 4.5 lost to Abhilash Reddy (AP) 5.5; Anurag Mhamal (Goa) 5.5 bt Vishwanath Prasad (AP) 4.5; C. Majumdar (Ben) 5.5 bt Mughil Jayavel (TN) 4.5; Deepathamsh Reddy (AP) 5.5 bt M. Swaroop (TN) 4.5; Rishi Shankar (Bih) 4.5 lost to Srikanth Ajay (TN) 5.5; Pratik Patil (Mah) 5 drew with Vaibhav Khanna (Del) 5; Shardul Gagare (Mah) 5.5 bt Vamsi Krishna (TN) 4.5; Vishnu Gopakumar (Ker) 4.5 lost to Megh Patel (Guj) 4.5; R. Eswar (AP) 4 lost to Karma Pandya (Guj) 5; Girish Koushik (Kar) 4.5 drew with R. Ganesh (TN) 4.5.
Girls: Priyanka Kumari (Jha) 6 lost to Srinidhi (TN) 6; Michelle Catherina (TN) 5.5 drew with Mahaswetha Kumar (Asm) 5.5; J. Saranya (TN) 5 drew with Deepika Kukchpudi (AP) 5; Dharani Sree (TN) 5.5 bt Nisha Patkar (Kar) 4.5; J. Vaishnavi (TN) 5.5 bt Vanessa D'Souza (Kar) 4.5; J. Akhila (AP) 5 drew with P.V. Nandhidhaa (TN) 5; U. Ashwini (TN) 4.5 lost to A. Gouthami (AP) 5.5; Krushna Mishra (Ori) 4 lost to P. Sujitha (TN) 5; Agnihothri Ghosh (Ben) 4.5 drew with Jania Maria (Pon) 4.5; Niyanta Dave (Guj) 4.5 drew with Akshaya Nandakumar (TN) 4.5; Aparna (Pon) 4 lost to V. Janu (TN) 5; Soumya Srivastav (Mah) 5 bt Arunima Kalra (Del) 4; B. Pratyusha (AP) 5 bt Sonakshi Rathore (Raj) 3.5.