Panaji, Sep 9 (UNI) World Junior silver medallist and India's youngest grandmaster Parimarajan Negi will be among the record 400 participants, including nine Grand Masters and 31 International Masters, who will vie for top honours in the Monginish 46th National ''B'' Chess championship which will get underway from September 15 to 25 at Damodar Saunshtan, Zambaulim in South Goa.
Goa Chess Assocaition (GCA) president Sameer Salgaocar and secretary Suhas Asnodkar, in a jointly news conference here today, said the 11-day event is organised by GCA under the auspices of All India Chess Federation and this will be the largest event to be held in Goa, with a record number of participants as far as the National ''B'' Championship is concerned.
They said the tournament will consists of 13 rounds in a Swiss league format and will feature some of the country's foremost players. The event is significant as 11 of these players will qualify for the National ''A'' Championship to be held in Manngalore in the last week of December.
Salgaocar said among the grand masters confirmed so far are Arjuna awardee Pravin Thipsay, who has won the National ''A'' championship seven times, Asian Junior Champion GM Deepan Chakkaravarty, Neelotpal Das (PSCB), who is India's 14th GM and one of the top contenders for the title.
Amongst the youngesters is reigning Asian Junior Champion international master P Karthikeyan (Chennai), who had won the inaugural edition of the international master round robin tournament in Pannala, Sri Lanka last month. Gold medal winning Indian team from the world Under-16 Olympiad in Turkey -- International Master B Adhiban, P Sethuraman and M Shyam Sunder. Three memebers from last year's Olympiad U-16 gold medal team -- P Shyam Nikhil, IM Ashwin Jayaram and FM S Nitin, will also be participating.
In the girls category, Asian Junior runners-up women IM Padmini Rout, Asian Junior Bronze medalist WIM Kiran Manisha Mohanty and world Under-12 Bronze medalist Shalmali Gagare.
Asnodkar said the tounament will feature four former world champions and reigning World U-8 girls champions -- host's Ivana Maria Furtado. The others include ex-World Champions IM Deep Sengupta (Jharkhand), Karnataka FIDE Master Girish Koushik and Sahajashri (Andhra Pradesh).
Among the 40-odd Goan participants reigning National Junior girls champion, Women FIDE Master Bhakti Kulkarni, World Schools u-9 Bronze medalist Anirudh Bhat and Asian girls U-8 fourth placed Riya Sawant will also be seen in action, he added.
The prize money will be worth Rs 1,75,000 and the winners will take home Rs 50,000 and a trophy. K R Seshadri will be the Chief Arbiter for the event, they added.
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