Top seed Chennai-A crushed third seed Tenali in the fifth round to wrest sole lead in the PSNA national cities team chess championship at Dindigul on Wednesday.

Shyam Nikil won first with a mating combination against Ravi Teja in board two. V.A.V. Rajesh put his rook in the line of two black minor pieces to defeat Mehar Chinna Reddy in the third board. Down 0-2, Tenali needed wins on the remaining two boards to tie the match. Having fielded all four International Masters for this game, Chennai-A players never allowed that to happen.

While Ramnath Bhuvanesh was grinding a win against Karthik in the bottom board, world under-16 champion Karthikeyan Murali won a knight on move 44 to defeat C.R.G. Krishna in the top board.

Chennai-A now leads with 10 points. Bangalore and Tenali are behind with eight each.

Bangalore was impressive chalking up two 4-0 sweeps against Dindigul-A and Virudhunagar-A.

Earlier, in the morning session, Chennai-A crushed Virudhunagar 4-0 and third seed Tenali surprisingly crushed fourth seed Chennai-B by a wide 3.5-0.5 margin. Untitled Mehar Chinna Reddy upset Grand Master Laxman on board three. — Arvind Aaron

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