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Koneru Humpy shoots into sole lead

Written by: Staff

Visakhapatnam, Apr 6: Grandmaster Koneru Humpy of Andhra Pradesh shot into the sole lead with a dazzling win over IM J Deepan Chakkravarthy of Tamil Nadu in the fifth round of the 42nd National A Chess Championship here at Swarna Bharathi Indoor stadium today.

In the Women's field, WGM Swathi Ghate of LIC emerged leader after the fourth round with cent per cent score of four points.

Playing her favourite Petroff defence, Humpy made her intentions clear from the start of the game and went all out for the White King. The time was ripe when Deepan made a wrong recapture with his Bishop instead of taking Black's dangerous Bishop. Humpy, who was waiting for this opportune moment sacrificed her dark-squared Bishop in return for three pawns. More important was that the white King lacked shelter and came under the firepower of Black's Queen and Bishop. Continuing very accurately, Humpy stormed the White' King with her extra pawns and forced a resignation from Deepan on the 37th move.

Deepan Chakkravarthy and Kidambi Sundararajan (BPCL) share second spot with 3.5 points each. Kidambi, known for his solid positional style, played a fine attacking game against IM PDS Girinath of Indian Railways. Girinath chose the Worall system of the Ruy Lopez and gave up his important dark-squared Bishop too early. This allowed Kidambi to employ his two Bishop advantage with good effect and focused on the White's Kingside. Lacking breathing space for his pieces, white was forced give up an exchange and two pawns. Material advantage was sufficient for Kidambi to win the game in 45 moves.

Playing for the first time in National A, D P Singh of Jharkand continued his string of surprise victories, defeating veteran IM Lanka Ravi of ONGC. Singh's victory came with the Black pieces in rare Ragozin system of the Queen's Gambit declined opening.

WGM Swathi Ghate emerged sole leader in the women's championship after her resounding win over L Iswarya Shobana of Tamil Nadu. The officer from Life Insurance Corporation of India, who had the Black pieces, faced the Four Knights Opening from her young rival. However the opening had no surprise for Swathi, who was fully prepared. The crucial moment came when Shobana had to chose between the risky continuation of winning material and safer path of trading the cunning Knight for her Bishop. Shobana chose the latter and Swathi unleashed a terrific attack on the white King, which the national Under-18 number two, found too much to handle. Faced with inevitable mate, white resigned on the 29th move.

The last but not the least game to end was between reigning champion WGM Nisha Mohota and WGM S Meenakshi, which lasted a marathon 77 moves. Nisha Mohota on white faced the ultra sharp Benko gambit. In the unclear situation, which arose, she went in for a Kingside attack, execution of which however was found wanting and lead to creation of a weak central pawn for white. After the exchange of Queen's white pawn weaknesses were glaring and Meenakshi neatly exploited them in the Rook and pawn endgame. Nisha resigned when she could not stop white's pawn from being promoted to a Queen.

Debutants Ramya Krishna of Andhra Pradesh and Kiran Mohanty of Orissa remained undefeated after drawing her mutual encounter in the Tartakower variation of Queen's Gambit Declined Opening. Kiran, who jointly led with Swathi Ghate is on the second spot with 3.5 points.

Round 5 results (men) IM J Deepan Chakravarthy (3.5) lost to GM Humpy Koneru (5) IM P D S Girinath (1) lost to IM S Kidambi (3.5) IM Saptharshi Roy Chowdhury (2.5) drew with GM S S Ganguly (3) GM R B Ramesh (3) drew with M R Venkatesh (2.5) IM Lanka Ravi (1) lost to D P Singh (3) IM S Arun Prasad (3) beat Himanshu Sharma (2) Arghyadip Das (1.5) drew with IM Abhijeet Gupta (2.5) V Kamble (1.5) drew with GM Abhijit Kunte (2.5) IM D K Sharma (1.5) lost to Sriram Jha (2) GM Sandipan Chanda (2) drew with Tej Kumar (2.5) B S Sivanandan B (2) - Bye (No game) Round 4 Results (women) Ishwarya Shobana (2) lost to WGM Swathi Ghate (4) Ramya Krishna I (2.5) drew with Kiran Mohanty (3.5) WGM Nisha Mohota (1.5) lost to WGM S Meenakshi (2) WIM Mary Ann Gomes (3) drew with WGM S Vijayalakshmi(2.5) WGM Esha Karvade (2) drew with WGM Aarthie Ramaswamy (1.5) Amruta Mokal (2) lost to Maji Supriya (2) Alka Das (1.5) drew with WIM Gokhale Anupama (0.5) Nimmy George (2) lost to J E Kavitha (1) Swati Mohota (0.5) drew with Soumya Swaminathan (0.5) WGM D Harika (1.5) - Bye (No game) UNI

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