Sasikiran, Koneru, Sandipan and Victor share lead at 8th Round

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Kolkata, Mar 31 (UNI) Four Grandmasters - Krishnan Sasikiran, Koneru Humpy, Sandipan Chanda and Viktor Laznicka- shared the lead after the eighth round at the third Kolkata Open Grandmaster Chess Tournament being played at Alekhine Chess Club.

Grandmaster Krishnan Sasikiran of India having the advantage of the white pieces outplayed Grandmaster Nguyen Anh Dung of Vietnam in sixty moves. The Vietnamese opted for the Slav defence and was soon under pressure. Sasikiran pushed his passed pawn on the 'a' file to win a piece and thereafter it was a cakewalk for the top seed.

International Master Saptarshi Roy lost to Koneru Humpy to shatter his chances of making his maiden GM norm. Saptarshi seemed to have done enough to ensure the draw but lost his concentration to blunder away the game. Humpy, however, maintained her lead.

City based Grandmaster Sandipan Chanda exerted pressure throughout his game against Ziaur Rahman to eventually romp home in 39 moves. The Bangladeshi tried out the Modern defence and was put under pressure by Sandipan's central pawn, which eventually decided the issue.

Grandmaster Viktor Laznicka of the Czech Republic also remained at the top with an exciting victory over Grandmaster Alberto David of Luxembourg. Even though the Czech had the black pieces he employed the Sicilian defence to slowly consolidate his position.

After he got equality he counter attacked to eventually net the full point.

Grandmaster Vladimir Dobrov of Russia had a slugfest against International Master Sundararajan Kidambi of India to leap to the joint second position. The Russian had the advantage of the white pieces and opted for the closed variation against the Indian. It turned into a brawl when the centre opened and both players attacked each others exposed kings. Dobrov had to play a few defensive moves after which the pressure exerted by his bishop was overbearing for the Indian who resigned on the 28th move.

World Junior Champion Ahmed Adly ofEgypt also managed to convert a technical endgame in his favour to pocket the full point against International Master Sriram Jha of India. Quite a few players are in contention for GM/IM/WGM/WIM norms at the tournament, a clear picture will emerge after the ninth round games.

Top board results:- GM Krishnan Sasikiran (6.5) beat GM Nguyen Anh Dung (5.5) IM Saptarshi Roy (5.5) lost to GM Koneru Humpy (6.5) GM Sandipan Chanda (6.5) beat GM Ziaur Rahman (5.5) GM Alberto David (5) lost to GM Viktor Laznicka (6.5) GM R.B.Ramesh (5.5) drew with GM Ghaem Maghami (5.5) IM Sriram Jha (5) lost to GM Adly Ahmed (6) GM Abdulla Al-Rakib (5.5) drew with GM Tejas Bakre (5.5) GM Vladimir Dobrov (6) beat IM Sundararajan Kidambi (5) GM Safin Shukhrat(6) beat B.T.Murali Krishnan (5) IM Ashwin Jayaram (5) lost to IM Arun Prasad (6) UNI XC-PC-ADG RAR VC2008

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