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Sethuraman holds on to his lead

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GM S.P. Sethuraman, the former under-16 World champion, drew with his Petroleum Board teammate M.R. Lalith Babu and maintained his slender half-point lead after the ninth round of the South Indian Bank-CMS 52nd National Premier chess championship at the CMS College campus here on Sunday evening.

Sethuraman has six points, and closely following him are Railways’ P. Karthikeyan and Petroleum’s former under-12 World champion Deep Sengupta with 5.5 points each.

Karthikeyan, an International Master, continued his good run, shocking GM Deepan Chakravarthy.

Vidit made to sweat

On another board, Petroleum GM Vidit Santosh Gujrathi, a former under-14 World champion, was forced to sweat for his victory against Railway’s former National blitz champion R.R. Laxman.

Laxman messed up some winning chances and ended up on the losing side. He had National Challengers champion Vidit on the ropes in the Queen’s Indian Defence but a poor strategy, where he opted for doubling his rooks in the seventh rank in the 40th move instead of going for a smarter Rc6, allowed his opponent to fight his way out of trouble.

Though Vidit had to give up his Queen for a rook, he recovered brilliantly to pull off a win using his two rooks and bishop.

The results (ninth round):

P. Karthikeyan (Rly, 5.5) bt Deepan Chakravarthy (Rly, 4.5), Sahaj Grover (Del, 5.5) bt V.A.V. Rajesh (TN, 1.5), R.R Laxman (Rly, 2) lost to Vidit Santosh Gujrathi (PSPB, 5).

Swayams Mishra (Odi, 3.5) drew with Abhijit Kunte (PSPB, 4.5), S.P. Sethuraman (PSPB, 6) drew with M.R. Lalith Babu (PSPB, 5).

Deep Sengupta (PSPB, 5.5) bt P.D.S. Girinath (Rly, 2), P. Shyam Nikhil (TN, 3.5) bye.

Saturday’s games (eighth round): P.D.S. Girinath lost to S.P. Sethuraman, M.R. Lalith Babu lost to Swayams Mishra, Abhijit Kunte bt R.R. Laxman, Vidit Santosh Gujrathi drew with Sahaj Grover, V.A.V. Rajesh lost to P. Karthikeyan, Deepan Chakravarthy drew with P. Shyam Nikhil, Deep Sengupta (bye).

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Printable version | Jan 26, 2020 5:01:48 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/sport/other-sports/south-indian-bankcms-52nd-national-premier-chess-championship-sethuraman-holds-on-to-his-lead/article6691450.ece

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