National Challengers: Ravi Teja tames Sai to lead by a point

The resounding victory in just 24 moves gave Ravi a one-point lead at seven points. Fourteen players, including the lone woman Grand Master Mary Ann Gomes, shared the second spot.

S. Ravi Teja capitalised on his opponent's lapse to gain a valuable one-point lead in the tournament.   -  Special Arrangement

Sometimes, the exuberance of youth borders on rashness. It was one such instance for the talented 16-year-old C. Sai Vishwesh. A sudden rush of blood resulted in Sai committing harakiri and handing over a point to S. Ravi Teja in the eighth round of the Amity National Challengers chess championship here on Thursday.

The resounding victory in just 24 moves gave Ravi a one-point lead at seven points. Fourteen players, including the lone woman Grand Master Mary Ann Gomes, shared the second spot.

Five more rounds remain in the competition to decide the nine qualifying spots in the National championship scheduled later in the year.

After what appeared poised for a long positional battle, Ravi took the initiative down the queenside with some active knight-movement. On the 18th move, Ravi captured a central pawn to trigger off a tactical sequence that left young Sai rattled.

In a hurry to get out of trouble, Sai traded his rook for a knight but it didn’t help his cause. Ravi won an additional piece and threatened to cause more damage as a hapless Sai resigned.

The battle between GMs Tejas Bakre and Mary ended in 32 moves after the latter forced a draw following perpetual checks. Second seed S. L. Narayanan and V. A. V. Rajesh found it futile to continue with their positional battle following 30 moves after R. Laxman and Sidhant Mohapatra drew in just 19 moves.

Leading results

Eighth round: S. Ravi Teja (7) bt C. Sai Vishwesh (6); S. L. Narayanan (6) drew with V. A. V. Rajesh (6); Tejas Bakre (6) drew with Mary Ann Gomes (6); R. R. Laxman (6) drew with Sidhant Mohapatra (6); Vishnu Prasanna (5) lost to Ramnath Bhuvanesh (6); B. Harsha (5.5) drew with Abhijit Kunte (5.5); Vikramaditya Kulkarni (6) bt N. Srinath (5); Utkal Ranjan Sahoo (5.5) drew with Himal Gusain (5.5); Sriram Jha (6) bt Dinesh Sharma (5); Neeraj Kumar Mishra (5.5) drew with Surya Praneeth (5.5); Ram Krishan (5) lost to S. Nitin (6); Abhishek Kelkar (6) bt Rahul Sangma (5); Arjun Tiwari (6) bt Mehar Chinna Reddy (5); Somak Palit (5) lost to Chanra Prasad (6); Aravindh Chithambaram (5) bt Milind Gawade (4).