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Shyam Sundar, Kim Phung bag titles

Arvind Aaron

Chennai: Shyam Sundar of Chennai and Vo Thi Kim Phung of Hue City in Vietnam won the Stree Seva Mandir Asian junior chess championships that concluded here on Wednesday.

Shyam Sundar who tied for the first place but was placed second in this event in 2006 at Delhi won his maiden title on tie-break after he figured in a three-way tie for the first place. “It was my career best result,” said Shyam, 18 who won the gold medal and also a Grand Master norm from this contest.

Sponsored by Indian Oil Corporation, Shyam is a student of Grand Master R.B. Ramesh and K. Visweswaran. He has completed twelfth standard from Velammal Matriculation School in Chennai and is about to pursue B.Com degree in the coming weeks.

“My best game was against (top seed) Adhiban and the turning point was the win against Srinath,” said Shyam who started as seed 14. His favourite player is Anand. In July, he is touring Spain and Greece for his next grand master norm. His ambition is to reach a rating of 2650 from his present 2372.

Vidit takes silver

Nasik player, Vidit's final round victory gave him a tie for the first place but he finished second on tie-break for the silver medal. Vidit started as the second seed and finished second.

S. Nitin of Salem finished third and his tie for the first place ensured that he became an International Master. “It was my career best,” said the tall Nitin who is trained by his father and chess official Senthilvel. All the three medal winners among boys and Nakhbayeva, the silver medal winner among girls remained undefeated.

Vo Thi Kim Phung played her best game of the tournament to defeat Preethi and win the girls' title on tie-break.

The champion, who started as seed 11 obtained her maiden Woman Grand Master norm and also became a Woman International Master today. Her favourite player is Kasparov and is accompanied by trainer Bao Tai. She is a class 11 student. “I never went out of the hotel in Chennai,” said the champion who at best wants to become a WGM.

Nakhbayeva of Kazakhstan beat Jeslin Tay of Singapore to remain the only undefeated player among girls and win the silver medal on lower tie-break score. She too scored 7.5 points, the same as the winner and would become a Woman International Master.

Defending champion Padmini Rout did not win any of her last two games and she slid to third place to win the bronze medal.

All the three medal winners in both the sections had a rare chance to get their presentations done before the world champion Viswanathan Anand.

The results (round nine, Indian unless stated): Boys: Shyam Sundar drew with S. Nitin, Mehar Chinna Reddy lost to Vidit Gujrathi, Lalith Babu drew with Ashwin Jayaram, S.P. Sethuraman bt Arun Karthik, N. Srinath lost to Anwesh Upadhyaya, Debashis Das bt Pascua Haridas (Phi).

Girls: Jeslin Tay (Sin) lost to Nakhbayeva (Kaz), Vo Thi Kim Phung (Vie) bt R. Preethi, Padmini Rout drew with Pv Nandhidhaa, R. Bharathi drew with Bhakti Kulkarni, Lakshmi Praneetha bt C. Sahajasri.

Final placings (tie-break order):

Boys: 1-3. M. Shyam Sundar (gold), Vidit Gujrathi (silver), S. Nittin (bronze) 7/9 each; 4-7. M.R. Lalith Babu, S.P. Sethuraman, Anwesh Upadhyaya, Debashis Das 6.5 each; 8-13. Mehar Chinna Reddy, K. Narayanan, P. Lokesh, Ashwin Jayaram. Darini Pouria (Iri), Swayams Mishra 6 each.

Girls: 1-2. Vo Thi Kim Phung (Vie, gold), Nakhbayeva Guliskhan (Kaz, silver) 7.5/9 each; 3 Padmini Rout (bronze) 6.5; 4-12. R. Bharathi, B. Pratyusha, R. Preethi, Bhakti Kulkarni, Jeslin Tay (Sin), Pv Nandhidhaa, Pon N. Krithikha, Hejazipour Mitra (Iri), Lakshmi Praneetha 6 each .

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