Tuesday, Sep 23, 2003
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By Rakesh Rao
Abhijit Gupta and IM Dinesh Kumar Sharma engaged in a battle of wits in the sixth round of the Piloo Modi Open chess tournament at Lucknow on Monday. Photo: R.V. Moorthy
Ramesh, who became the sole leader after beating Gurpreet Pal Singh in the fifth round this afternoon, defeated G. Balaji in an ending involving rook and pawns to maintain his half-point lead.
The Kanpur-based Shukla, known to be temperamental, continued his dream run at the expense of Yogesh Gore on the second board.
On a day when electricity failure in the evening delayed the proceedings, Abhijit was at his electrifying best. Having scored over Dinesh Sharma in the Muzafarpur, Abhijit entered the match full of confidence and played that way throughout. In a match which followed the Botwinnik variation of Semi Slav in Queen's Gambit, the players followed the theoretical line till the 16th move before Dinesh faltered. Abhijit, who turns 14 next month, saw his chance and pounced on his rival's error of judgment. He refused a draw-offer on the 18th turn and after exchange of major pieces, made the most of his connected king-side passed pawns and won with ease.
Abhijeet, who has won several medals at the Asian and Commonwealth age-group, besides winning individual and team medals in the Youth Olympiad, is in the company of Gurpreet Pal Singh, Neeraj Mishra, Joydev Saha, Varugeese Koshy and Soumya Ranjan Mishra.
In the morning, Dinesh was lucky to elude the grasp of Rishi Pal Singh, the genial Hyderabad-based sardar who overlooked a two-move checkmating combination and surrendered an important point.
Gurpreet, a former National junior champion, cracked a second International Master in as many days. After having beaten P. Konguvel on Sunday, Gurpreet cashed in on a bishop-blunder by S. Satyapragyan and later traded his queen for two rooks to win.
Gurpreet's trainee Sahaj Grover, the reigning National under-7 champion and the youngest rated player in the country, drew with Rohan Shandilya in the morning and defeated Ketaki Kulkarni in the sixth round to reach 3.5 points.
Sixth round: G. Balaji (4.5) lost to R. B. Ramesh (6); Vivek Kumar Shukla (5.5) bt Yogesh Gore (4.5); Gurpreet Pal Singh (5) bt S. Satyapragyan (4); Abhijit Gupta (5) bt Dinesh Kumar Sharma (4); P. D. S. Girinath (4.5) drew with T. S. Ravi (4.5); Neeraj Mishra (5) bt Valay Parikh (4); Joydev Saha (5) bt Preetham Sharma (4); Varugeese Koshy (5) bt Diwakar Prasad Singh (4); Nisha Mohota (4) lost to Soumya Ranjan Mishra (5); Arindam Mukherjee (4.5) drew with R. Balasubramanium (4.5); Joydeep Dutta (4.5) drew with Himanshu Sharma (4.5); Prathamesh Mokal (4.5) bt Mithilesh Srivastava (3.5); Anup Deshmukh (4.5) bt Anurag Jaiswal (3.5); Swaraj Palit (4.5) bt Vedant Goswami (3.5); K. Ramu (4.5) bt S. K. Rathore (3.5); Rajkamal Singh (4.5) bt Ravi Kumar (3.5); Rakesh Ranjan (4) drew with Amit Pal Singh (4); Rupankar Nath (4) drew with Kanti Lal Dave (4); D. S. Negi (3.5) lost to Swati Mohota (4.5); Atul Pati Tripathi (4) drew with Pranjal Das (4); N. Sudhakar Babu (4) bt C. V. Rajalakshmi (3); Arif Ali (3) lost to S. Poobesh Anand (4); R. R. Laxman (4) bt Mayank Pandey (3); Vikrant Chole (3) lost to P. Konguvel (4); N. Venu Madhav (3) lost to Amardeep Bartakke (4); Rishi Pal Singh (3) lost to Sajal Basak (4); Pradip Ghosh (4) bt W. A. Khan (3); Raghuram Balaji (3.5) drew with D. Ravishankar (3.5); K. Nikhilesh Kumar (4) bt N. K. V. Govindan (3); Harkamal Singh (4) bt Atamjit Singh (3).
Fifth round: Ramesh bt Gurpreet Pal Singh; Gore drew with Balaji; Vivek Shukla drew with Koshy; Balasubramanium drew with Girinath; Diwakar Prasad drew with Abhijit; Bartakke lost to Satyapragyan; Dinesh bt Rishi Pal; Ravi Kumar drew with Mokal; T. S. Ravi bt Pradip Ghosh; Ravishankar lost to Neeraj Mishra; Preetham bt Nikhilesh; Amitpal Singh drew with Deshmukh; Poobesh lost to Joydev Saha; Soumya Ranjan Mishra bt Laxman; Konguvel lost to Joydeep Dutta; Adabala Tejdeep lost to Nisha; Dilip Das lost to Parikh; Goswami drew with Ramu; H. Venkatesh lost to Arindam Mukherjee; S. K. Rathore drew with Atul Tripathi; Pranjal bt E. V. Ravi; Sajal Basak drew with Babu; Himanshu Sharma bt Hemant Sharma; Kanti Lal Dave bt Junaid Ahmed; Ravi Ranjan lost to D. S. Negi; Devendra Bajpai lost to Rupankar Nath; Atamjeet Singh drew with S. K. Khasim; Ram Ranjan Singh lost to Swaraj Palit; Mithilesh K. Srivastava bt Debaditya Singh Biswas; Zameer Ahmad Khan lost to Rajkamal Singh.
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