Hari, Vidit advance in World Chess; Adhiban, Nihal face tie-break games

After posting three successive wins in the premier competition, 15-year-old Nihal Sarin suffered his first loss owing to mistakes committed under severe time-pressure.

Nihal Sarin (in picture) suffered a lost against Eltaj Safarli.   -  Special Arrangement

P. Hari Krishna and Vidit Gujrathi followed different routes to the third round of World Cup chess tournament here on Sunday.

On a day when B. Adhiban drew again and Nihal Sarin suffered his first loss to go into Sunday’s tie-break games, Aravindh Chithambaram’s campaign ended following a draw in a must-win game.

Hari became the first Indian to advance to the third round after drawing in 60 moves against Russia’s Vladimir Fedoseev in Game Two of the second round. Since Hari won their first game on Friday, he was declared the winner by 1.5-0.5.

Vidit Gujrathi worked his way to a 62-move victory over Russia’s Alexandr Rakhmonov. The players drew their game on Saturday.  Vidit plays Wesley So in the third round.

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Adhiban drew again with formidable Chinese Yu Yangyi to go into the tie-break games.

After posting three successive wins in the premier competition, Nihal suffered his first loss owing to mistakes committed under severe time-pressure. Playing black against Azerbaijan’s Eltaj Safarli, Nihal was better off until the 31st move and looked comfortably placed to gain at least a draw needed to advance to the next round.

However, in a hurry to complete 40 moves in stipulated time, Nihal blundered on the 32nd move and lost his bishop for no compensation. He resigned five moves later.

Aravindh battled to a 58-move draw against Evgeny Tomashevsky. The young Indian faced a must-win situation following his defeat on Friday.

The results (involving Indians)

Round Two: Game Two: Vladimir Fedoseev (Rus, 2664) (0.5) drew with P. Hari Krishna (2746) (1.5); Aleksandr Rakhmanov (Rus, 2606) (0.5) lost to Vidit Gujrathi (2718) (1.5); Yu Yangyi (Chn, 2763) (1) drew with B. Adhiban (2639) (1); Eltaj Safarli (Aze, 2593) (1) bt Nihal Sarin (2610) (1); Evgeny Tomashevsky (Rus, 2718) (1.5) drew with Aravindh Chithambaram (2609) (0.5).

(Tie-break games on Sunday will decide the matches locked 1-1)