Indian Grand Master Harika Dronavalli got off to a mixed start at the 2016 FIDE World Chess Rapid and Blitz Championships (Open and Women) with a win, two draws and one loss under her belt here on Tuesday.
Playing in the Women World Rapid category of the championship, she began her campaign against the Women Grandmaster Jana Krivec of Slovenia with an ELO rating of 2194. Harika looked to be in supreme form and started on an aggressive note. She mounted pressure on her opponent from the onset and eventually ran away with her first victory of the championship.
In her second tie of the day, she was up against the third seeded Grand Master Alexandra Kosteniuk of Russia and one of the tournament favourites. Bouyed by her success in the opening game, she began well but few inaccurate moves saw the Indian get into bad position.
The World No.7 tried to recover and took the fight to the ELO rated 2552 player but it could not prove enough and she finally went down to the Russian. She locked horns against Woman Grandmaster Zhansaya Abdumalik with ELO rating of 2323 from Kazakhstan. Both the players decided to play safe and were happy to concede a draw. And in the last game of the day, the Hyderabadi lass faced off against International Master Alina Kashlinskaya of Russia.