An irrepressible Nihal Sarin produced another come-from-behind triumph to nail fancied Dutch Anish Giri 5-4 for a place in the title-clash of the $500,000 Chess.com Global Championship Finals on Saturday.
The talent from Thrissur won the Armageddon game with white pieces after the eight rapid games left the players locked at 4-4.
He will take on USA’s Wesley So who carved out a 5-3 victory over compatriot Hikaru Nakamura after six successive draws.
The losing semi finalists will receive $50,000 each while the finalists will battle it out for the top prize of $200,000. The runner-up will get $100,000.
On Saturday, when the contest resumed at 2-2, Anish won the fifth game to surge ahead. For the second time in the match, Nihal immediately drew level to make it 3-3. The following two games ended as draws.
In the decisive Armageddon game, the battle was evenly fought till Nihal’s 99th move. At this stage, Anish’s response gave Nihal a chance to seize and the youngster did not miss it.
Nihal proceeded accurately in an ending involving a rook each and pawns. Sensing that he had reached a point of no return, Anish resigned on the 104th move when he realised the only way to stop Nihal’s lone pawn from queening was by sacrificing his rook.
- Atlanta United 5-2 Inter Miami Highlights: Miami slump to huge loss without Lionel Messi in MLS
- Neeraj Chopra finishes 2nd in Diamond League finals, Vadlejch wins
- Neeraj Chopra ends 2nd, Diamond League finals HIGHLIGHTS: Vadlejch becomes champion with 84.24m attempt
- VIDEO: Messi returns to Inter Miami ahead of match against Atlanta
- Cristiano Ronaldo scores again as Al Nassr beats Al Raed 3-1 in Saudi Pro League