Ganguly, Vishnu share lead in Asian chess championship
Playing in his elements, Ganguly outclassed Jahongir Vakhidov of Uzbekistan while Vishnu Prasanna outplayed fellow Indian Grandmaster M R Lalith Babu to maintain a clean slate for the third day running in the premier continental event.
With two leaders on three points, a pack of seven players including Indian grandmasters Abhijeet Gupta, Sandipan Chanda and Vidit Gujrathi are on the heels of the leader a half point behind.
There are six more rounds remaining in the event which is a part of the next World Championship cycle. Top five players from here will qualify for the World Chess Cup to be held next month in Baku, Azerbaijan. Vishnu Prasanna took the day’s honours with a perfect attacking game against Lalith Babu.
Up against the <g data-gr-id="38">Caro Kann</g> defense, Vishnu went for the most topical advanced variation and launched his attack in the middle game.
Lalith Babu succumbed to the pressure as Vishnu capped his performance with a fine rook sacrifice.
Ganguly won <g data-gr-id="40">Vakhidov’s</g> queen with his white piece and the young Uzbek grandmaster was already staring at a long and painful defense.
While the struggle was intense, the result of the game was never in doubts as Ganguly methodically used his extra material.
Gupta also played a fine game against Dzhumaev out of a Dutch Leningrad. Playing white, Gupta’s preparation came good as Dzhumaev fell under acute time pressure and lost a rook for Bishop. When the game finished the Indian had still an hour on the clock.
In the women’s section being organised simultaneously, Padmini Rout suffered shocking defeat against Atousa Pourkashiyan of Iran in the third round.
Padmini remained on two points and will have to do a catch-up act now.
Soumya Swaminathan stole the limelight here after she accounted for top seed Tan Zhongyi of China.
Winning with black pieces, Soumya took her tally to 2.5 points and now shares the third spot behind Pourkashiyan and Aulia Medina Warda of Indonesia.
Among other Indians in the fray, S Vijayalakshmi and Mary Ann Gomes also reached 2.5 points after drawing with Dinara Saduakassova of Kazakhstan and Zhang Xiaowen of China respectively. Six more rounds remain.