Arjun Erigaisi and R. Praggnanandhaa surrendered to higher-rated rivals in the opening round of the $210,000 Meltwaters Champions Chess Tour Finals on Monday.
Arjun tossed away a promising position in the opening game against Poland’s Jan-Krzysztof Duda by two committing two blunders in quick successions to lose. The second game was drawn before Duda punished Arjun again with white pieces to win 2.5-0.5.
In contrast, Praggnanandhaa made a comeback after losing the first game to Azerbaijan’s Shakhriyar Mamedyarov by winning the third. But Mamedyarov gained control in the fourth game and won in 39 moves for a 2.5-1.5 verdict.
In the other two matches, Magnus Carlsen expectedly defeated Wesley So 2.5-1.5 and Anish Giri overpowered Liem Le 1.5-0.5 in the blitz games after their four-game rapid clash ended 2-2.