Harikrishna optimistic

HYDERABAD: Pentyala Harikrishna will leave for Spain on Friday morning to take part in the Pamplona international round-robin chess tournament in pursuit of his first target of reaching the 2700-plus rating.

Speaking to The Hindu on the eve of his departure, Harikrishna, who lost in the third round of the recent World Cup, hopes it should be a great experience as the draw also includes former world champion and last World Cup runner-up Ruslan Ponomariov. Incidentally, the Hyderabadi chess star is seeded third and currently has an Elo 2678.

Apparently pleased with his training experience with Elizbar Ubilava, Harikrishna is optimistic of a much better showing in the year 2006.

"Right now no specific plan has been charted out yet regarding my training schedule. But in all probability my tie-up with Ubilava should continue for some more time because I am happy with the way things have been going on. He knows my strengths and weakness better and is working very hard on them," Harikrishna said.

New Club `C'

in semifinal

New Club `C' defeated Fateh Maidan Club 2-1 in the quarterfinals of the Laxmi Narasu memorial inter-club snooker tournament here.

The results: New Club `C' bt FMC 2-1 (T. Srinath bt Manish Jaiswal 43-12, 50-33, 64-58; M. Solomon lost to Vineet Khanjani 61-39, 29-71, 42-57, 44-34, 25-71; M. Nagabushanam bt Madan Kumar 59-37, 60-15, 50-31).

Inter-district carrom

Ramagundam Thermal Power Station will host the NTPC inter-district carrom championship for men and women in singles and doubles from January 2 to 6, according to Mr. B.K. Haranath, president Hyderabad Carrom Association.

The men's inter-district championship will be held on league-cum-knock-out basis. Entries close on January 1 and should be sent to M. Narsaiah, general secretary of NTPC Recreation Club, Jyothinagar, Ramagundam. Further particulars can be had on Phone Nos. 98666 271788 \ 92465 83570.

Santa Cup cricket

Vijaya Paul's Cricket Academy (Bhavan's Sainikpuri) will organise the fifth Santa Cup cricket tournament for boy in the age groups of 11, 13 and 15 years from December 24 to December 30.

Some of the outstation teams which will take part in the meet are Brijesh Patel Cricket Academy and Raymonds Cricket Academy (UAE). Special incentives will be given for the best individual performances.

Srikanth to lead

Srikanth will lead Hyderabad in the South Zone (under-13) cricket tournament to be held in Bangalore from December 25.

The team: Srikanth (captain), Naveen, Ashrith, Sai Sreekar, Zeeshan Ali Baig, Vaibhav, Rohan Yadav, H. Vihari, Vinay Rao, Chaitanya Krishna, Yateen Reddy, Karthik, Vamshi Vardhan Reddy, J. Akshit, Dheeraj Reddy and Akash Bhandari. Coach: Girish (Deccan Chronicle). Manager: S. Vaijanath (Income Tax).

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