After her disappointing draw with a much lesser rated rival in the second round, top seed Dinara Saduakassova was determined, or rather desperate, to bounce back to winning ways. But, India's P.V. Nandhidhaa refused to oblige.

The Tamil Nadu player deployed Larsen’s Opening and forced Saduakassova to split the point in the third round of the World Junior Girls’ Chess Championship at the KIIT University here on Wednesday. Nandhidhaa, in fact, was in a better position when she opted to draw the game by a repetition of moves.

“If I was in her position, I would not have agreed for a draw at that stage,” said the top seed. “She played really well, though. But I played too ambitiously with black. I am, however, glad that I was able to find some useful defensive moves.”

Nandhidhaa should be glad to have got a draw from a rival who is rated 272 Elo points above her. She has now 2.5 points, just half-a-point behind the four early leaders – Russians Anila Bovil and Dinara Dordzhieva, Janelle Mae Frayna of Philippines and Nataliya Buksa of Ukraine.

The top seed among the boys, Vladislav Artemeiv of Russia, registered his third successive win and moved into the lead position along with 10th seed S.L. Narayanan. Second seed Jeffrey Xiong of the United States was held to a draw by Georgia’s Irakli Beradze.

Important results (third round; Indians unless specified): Open: Vladislav Artemiev (Rus) 3 bt Tran Tuan Minh (Vie) 2; Irakli Beradze (Geo) 2.5 drew with Jeffrey Xiong (USA) 2.5; Kirill Alekseenko (Rus) 2.5 drew with N.R. Visakh 2.5; Aravindh Chithambaram 2.5 drew with Xu Yi (Chn) 2.5; Bozidar Ivekovic (Cro) 2 lost to S.L. Narayanan 3; Paulo Bersamina (Phi) 2 drew with Parham Maghsoodloo (Ira) 2; Nihal Sarin 1.5 lost to Rasmus Svane (Ger) 2.5; Yuan Qingyu (Chn) 2.5 bt Cristobal Henriquez Villagra (Chi) 1.5; Yu Yinglun (Chn) 2 drew with Rajdeep Sarkar 2; Karthikeyan Murali 2.5 bt M. Chakravarthi Reddy 1.5; Harsha Bharathakoti 2.5 bt Aryan Gholami (Ira) 1.5; Mikhail Belous (Ukr) 2 drew with Grzegorz Nasuta (Pol) 2; Ankit Gajwa 1.5 lost to Masoud Mosadeghpour (Ira) 2.5; Anish Gandhi 2.5 bt Seyed Khalil Mousavi (Ira) 1.5; Dennis Wagner (Ger) 1.5 drew with Rakesh Kumar Jena 2; Karthik Venkataraman 1 lost to Shardul Gagare 2; Shahin Lorparizangenesh (Ira) 2 bt N. Krishna Teja 1; Dhulipalla Bala Chandra Prasad 1 lost to R. Pragnananda 2; Christoph Menezes (Aut) 2 bt Velimir Ivic (Srb) 1; Utkal Ranjan Sahoo 1 lost to G. Akash 2.

Girls: Alina Bovil (Rus) 3 bt Michelle Catherina 2; Dinara Dordzhieva (Rus) 3 bt Karina Ivanova (Rus) 2; Ashritha Eswaran (USA) 2 lost to Janelle Mae Frayna (Phi) 3; Nataliya Buksa (Ukr) 3 bt G.K. Monisha 2; P.V. Nandhidhaa 2.5 drew with Dinara Saduakassova (Kaz) 2; Mobina Alinasab (Ira) 1.5 lost to Pratyusha Bodda 2.5; M. Mahalakshmi 1.5 lost to Paula Rodriguez Rueda (Col) 2.5; Oliwia Kiolbasa (Pol) 2 drew with Tijana Blagojevic (Mne) 2; Parnali Dharia 2.5 bt Harshita Guddanti 1.5; Anna Styazhkina (Rus) 2 bt Priyanka Nutakki 1.5; R. Vaishali 2 bt Anysia Thomas (Fra) 1; Daria-Iona Visanescu (Rom) 1 lost to Teodora Injac (Srb) 2; Gu Tianlu (Chn) 2 bt Caterina Leonardi (Slo) 1; K. Priyanka 2 bt Uurtsaikh Uuriintuya (Mgl) 1; Sakshi Chitlange 1.5 drew with Alessia Santerno (Ita) 1.5; Saina Salonika 1.5 drew with Du Yuxin (Chn) 1.5; Hajra Chandreyee 1.5 drew with V. Varshini 1.5; R. Divya Lakshmi 2 bt Srija Seshadri 1; Narmin Soyunlu (Aze) 1.5 drew with Shree Ayinala (USA) 0.5; Gulrukhbegim Tokhirjonova (Uzb) 1.5 bt Amy Hoare (Eng) 0.5.