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Lalith Babu gets the better of Magnus Carlsen

Lalith Babu...scripting a memorable win

Lalith Babu...scripting a memorable win   | Photo Credit: Ranjeet Kumar;Ranjeet Kumar -

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Indian GM wins in 80 moves for Delhi Dynamite in PRO Chess League

GM M. Lalith Babu is on cloud nine after his victory over World champion Magnus Carlsen in an ongoing online PRO ChessLeague, organised by www.chess.com, on Wednesday.

Lalith defeated the Norwegian in 80 moves after a 45-minute tussle.

“I was representing Delhi Dynamite (DD) while Carlsen played for Norway Gnomes. We defeated the Norway outfit 11.5-4.5 in a lopsided encounter to qualify for the play-offs.

“Indian GMs P. Harikrishna, Sahaj Grover, Abhijit Gupta and UAE GM Salem Saleh were the other members of my team,” said Lalith to The Hindu on Friday.

“The unorthodox opening put Carlsen in a spot of bother right from the beginning.

“Interestingly, with everything on the line for Norway, Carlsen chose a less-than-critical opening.

“However, he entertained the fans with truly risky and dubious opening play essaying 1. Na3, 1.f3, and the Portuguese variation of the Scandinavian defence rarely seen at the top level”.

“In the semi-rapid game, he was forced to sacrifice his queen to protect his weak king and he was keen on defending (his king) most of the times,” he added.

Lalith’s morale has received a fillip with this win and he wants to put his not-so-impressive show at the Gibraltar GM tournament behind and prepare for the forthcoming big fixtures earnestly.

“This win means a lot to me for I defeated the world’s top player. I will be preparing for the Asian chess championship to be held in May with new vigour and confidence.

“The Commonwealth Championship and Jakarta Asian Games are other two major tourneys lined up for me this year,” said Lalith, who trains with his first coach Murali in the sleepy village of Ponnur in Guntur District.

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Printable version | Jan 26, 2020 6:06:40 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/sport/other-sports/lalith-babu-gets-the-better-of-magnus-carlsen/article22911418.ece

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