Harika, Humpy humbled

KOZHIKODE NOV. 1 . India suffered a major setback when overnight sole leader Dronavalli Harika lost to China's Xiaoweng Zhang in the ninth round of the girls' under-14 event in the World youth chess championship at Halkidiki in Greece. That meant there was none from India among the leaders.

Harika remained on seven points, half-a-point behind the two Russian leaders, Valentina Gunina and Nadejda Kharmunova. N. Raghavi had six points, J. Rajasurya 5.5 and Kajri Choksi 3.5.

S. Ravi Teja (7.5) beat fellow-Indian Aditya Udesi (six) to take the sole second position in the boys' under-10, in which Russia's Sanan Sjugirov (8.5) maintained his sole lead. Parimarja Negi was on 6.5 and K. Priyadarshan six.

Former World junior champion Koneru Humpy (5.5) suffered a second successive loss when she was beaten by Radoslaw Wojtaszek of Poland in the boys' under-16 competition. Anthony Bellaiche of France and Evgeny Tomashevsky of Russia were leading the event with 7.5 points each. Deepan Chakravarthy had six points, K. Nikilesh Kumar 5.5 and Akshayraj Kore five.

In the boys' under-18, Azerbaijan's Shakhriyaz Mamedyarov (8.5) dropped half-a-point after scoring eight successive wins, but he still maintained a 1.5-point lead over his nearest rivals. India's Saptarshi Roy was on four and Himanshu Kumar 2.5.

Sergei Zhigalko of Belarus (7.5) took the sole lead in the boys' under-14. G. Rohit had 6.5, D. Sai Srinivas and Abhijeet Gupta six each and Navin Kanna five.

In the boys' under-12, Vietnam's Liem Le Quang and China's Chenpeng Wei were still in the lead with eight points each. R. Ashwath had 5.5, Sankalp Modwal five and Yuzvendra Chahal 4.5.

Chenpeng Wei of China maintained the sole lead in the girls' under-10 with eight points. Gundala Madanasri had six, Mohana Priya and P. Lakshmi Sahithi 5.5 each and G. Sirisha 4.5.

Another Chinese player, Yixin Ding (8.5) was still in the lead in the girls' under-12 category. K. Lakshmi Praneetha was on 6.5 I. Ramya Krishna five and Dhyani Dave four.

In the girls' under-16, Maria Fominykh of Russia (7.5) snatched the sole lead from Salome Melia of Georgia (seven). N. Vinuthna had five points.

Georgia's Nana Dzagnidze maintained her sole lead in the girls' under-18 with 7.5 points. P. Priya was on 4.5.

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