Vaibhav Suri takes sole lead

As things stand, Suri leads the field with 5.5 points, followed by a pack of four — Abhijeet, Dhopade, Tejas and Australian International Master Aleksandar Wohl — at five points.

Grandmaster Vaibhav Suri (left) who defeated second seed Aravindh Chithambaram to take the sole lead after the sixth round of the Commonwealth Chess Championship in New Delhi on Friday.

Local Grandmaster Vaibhav Suri punished an adventurous second seed Aravindh Chithambaram for a questionable bishop-sacrifice and emerged as the only leader after the sixth round of the Commonwealth Chess Championship here on Friday.

Before top-seed Abhijeet Gupta settled for a draw in spite of looking good to assert his superiority against Swapnil Dhopade, the fifth overnight leader Tejas Bakre drew with fellow GM Abhijit Kunte.

As things stand, Suri leads the field with 5.5 points, followed by a pack of four — Abhijeet, Dhopade, Tejas and Australian International Master Aleksandar Wohl — at five points.

Suri, who looked to be playing for a draw with white pieces from the start of his French Defence game, surprisingly got lucky when Aravindh, after gaining a kingside pawn, chose to sacrifice his bishop to break
white king’s castle. Suri proceeded carefully and after 80 moves, reached a position where Aravindh had to either lose the queen or get checkmated.

Among the ladies, Swati Ghate (4.5) moved ahead after a creditable draw with Bangladesh’s GM Ziaur Rahman. The defeat of Bhakti Kulkarni, at the hands of Wohl, also helped Swati’s cause.

In a big surprise, local G. B. Joshi needed just 21 moves with white pieces to crush Padmini Rout after the reigning National women's champion seriously misplayed the opening lines of French Defence.

Sixth round results:

Open: Abhijeet Gupta (5) drew with Swapnil Dhopade (5); Vaibhav Suri (5.5) bt Aravindh Chithambaram (4.5); Tejas Bakre (5) drew with Abhijit Kunte (5); Mitrabha Guha (4.5) drew with Shardul Gagare (4.5); Bhakti Kulkarni (4) lost to Aleksandar Wohl (Aus, 5); Ziaur Rahman (Ban, 4) drew with Swati Ghate (4.5); Niaz Murshed (Ban, 3.5) lost to M. S. Thej Kumar (4.5); Sahaj Grover (3.5) lost to Pravin Thipsay (4.5); Deepan Chakkravarthy (4.5) bt K. Priyanka (3.5); Mary Ann Gomes (4) drew with Abdullah Al Rakib Mollah (4); Chakravarthi Reddy (4) drew with Ankit Rajpara (4); V. Pranavananda (3.5) lost to P. Shyam
Nikhil (4.5).