SPORT

Thipsay asserts his class

PROUD WINNER: Praveen M. Thipsay receiving the trophy from Ananthakrishna, Chairman, Karnataka Bank Ltd.

PROUD WINNER: Praveen M. Thipsay receiving the trophy from Ananthakrishna, Chairman, Karnataka Bank Ltd.   | Photo Credit: — Photo: R. Eswarraj

Staff Correspondent

MANGALORE: Two minor hiccups in the third and the fifth rounds could not stop Grandmaster Praveen M. Thipsay of Union Bank of India from walking away with the top prize in the Mangalore FIDE-rated all-India open chess tournament 2007, which concluded here on Saturday.

The six-day event was organised by the South Kanara District Chess Association, under the auspices of United Karnataka Chess Association.

Thipsay (7.5), who was second on the leader board after nine rounds, fought back in style to quell overnight leader Thej Kumar’s (8) challenge to pocket Rs. 30,000 and an attractive trophy.

Experience

Thipsay capitalised on the inexperience of his relatively young opponent in the tenth and final round and went in for an unusual opening in answer to the Caro-Kann opening adopted by Thej Kumar.

Sivanandan B.S. (8), also of Karnataka, who could have forced a two-way tie for the top place, had the mortification of being held to a draw by International Master Atanu Lahiri (7.5) on the second board.

Although five players — Thej Kumar, Sivanandan, IMs Saptarshi Roy, Konguvel Ponnuswamy and Laxman R.R., finished with eight points apiece, they shared the second to sixth spots based on their progressive scores.

Thipsay admitted that he had played some bad chess in going down to veteran Abdul Majeed (in round three) and scrapping home for a win against Aniketh R. Pawashe (in fifth round).

Thipsay also admitted that the format of the event, where one had to play two gruelling rounds spread over four hours, was taxing and did not give much scope for preparation.

Important results: final round: Praveen Thipsay (8.5) bt Thej Kumar M.S. (8); Sivanandan B.S. (8) drew with Atanu Lahiri (7.5); Laltu Chatterjee (7) lost to Saptarshi Roy (8); Konguvel Ponnuswamy (8) bt Murali Krishna B.T. (7). Vishnu Prasanna (7) lost to Laxman R.R. (8); Saravana Krishnan P. (7.5) drew with Anurag Jaiswal (7.5); Haribalu V. (7) drew with Sudhakar N. Babu (7); Sanjay N. (7.5) bt Rupankar Nath (6.5), Karthikeyan P. (7.5) bt Sai Krishna G.V. (6.5); Mehar Chinna Reddy C.H. (7) drew with Phoobalan P. (7).

Special awards: Best players: u-7: Abhimanyu Sameer Puranik (Mah); u-9: Harshal Shahi (Del); u-11: Girish A. Kaushik (Kar); u-13: Antonio Viani D’ Cunha (Kar); u-15: Stany G.A. (Kar); u-17: Sai Krishna G.V. (AP); unrated: S.N. Anand Swarup (Kar); Karnataka player: Vijendra Y.G. (Mysore); South Kanara player: Gahan M.G.; best veteran (above-55): Gopal Shah (Guj); best woman (above-18): E. Sheena (Ker); best South Kanara (unrated): Varun Kamath.

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