Panaji, Sep 24 (UNI) The Penultimate 12th round saw a sensational upset when Maharashtra International Master Akshayraj Kore (ELO 2392) stunned Grandmaster Neelotpal Das (ELO 2462) of PSCB in the Monginis 46th National ''B'' Chess Championship at Damodar Saunsthan in South Goa today.
Kore's chances to claim the title will brighten, if he can put it across International Master B Adhiban (ELO 2422) in the final round tomorrow. Kore is trailing the Tamil Nadu star by just half point.
In a hard fought struggle, lasting 40 moves, Kore was lucky to win against Das. In fact, Kore admitted of being lost after the fifth move and struggling after the irregular opening. It was his tremendous fighting spirit which finally saw him vanquish grandmaster Neelotpal.
These two players are followed by 14 players all, on nine points each, including the top seed Grandmaster Parimarjan Negi, Grandmaster Pravin Thipsay and Deepan Chakravarty. What will heavily weigh on the players mind is that only the top eleven qualifiers will play the ensuing National ''A'' championship in Mangalore in December and tomorrow's round will see all the participants slug it out for the slots in the premier Championship.
Among the Goan players, it was former state Champion Amurag Mhamal (ELO 2113) who drew with his own coach and National u-25 runners up Akash Thakur (ELO 2276) in 18 moves of the Breyer variation of the Ruy Lopez. Anurag stands to gain 40 ELO rating points from this event alone.
The other brilliant display came from unrated Kelvin D Lima from Moira, who played brilliantly to beat Jagdish Chandel (ELO 1835) of Himachal Pradesh in a strong queenside attack. His opponent finally resigned when faced with checkmate after 36 moves of a king's Indian Defence opening. Ritviz Parab, the unrated youngster also did well to draw with Vigneshraj Muthuram (ELO 1720) of Tamil Nadu in a closed Sicilian Game, lasting 42 moves, to also improve his chances of a FIDE rating performance.
Among the girls, National Junior Girls Champion Bhakti Kulkarni (ELO 2166) was distinctly unlucky to lose to M R Lalita Babu (ELO 2034) of Andra Pradesh. Her opponent was in a weak position as per the observation of Grandmaser Negi, however Bhakti somewhere missed the winning continuation and resigned after 60 moves in an English opening when she found that she was going to lose a knight. Double World Under eight girls champion Ivana Furtado (ELO 1836) Goa's other wondergirl was solid in a 36 moves draw with Jayesh Ramanuj (ELO 2076) of Gujarat, and this draw will do wonders for her confidence as she heads into the final round.
Other results: Suhas Asnodkar (ELO 2031) lost to P K Singh (ELO 2150), Bihar, Kishore Bandekar (unrated) beat Gautam Tari (ELO 1835) also of Goa, Vasanth Naik (ELO 1969) defeated Yogesh Gautam (ELO 1809), Haryana and Niraj Saripalli (ELO 1952) defeated Arjun Bharat (ELO 1815), Karnataka.
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