International Master R. Vaishali made her second Grandmaster-norm on her way to the 8th Fischer memorial round-robin chess title in Heraklion, Greece, on Tuesday.
In the 10-player event, Vaishali scored seven points from nine rounds. Though tied for the title with Israel’s Yoav Milikow, Vaishali was adjudged the champion on superior tiebreak count.
She opened her campaign with a draw, lost the second round and then won five rounds on the trot. Vaishali’s winning sequence snapped following an eighth-round draw with Greek GM Ioannis Nikolaidis. But the Chennai girl returned to beat French rival Marco Materia in the final round for the title.
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Rated 2411, Vaishali performed at 2596 to gain 21 rating points. Her second GM-norm comes almost three years after the first attained in the 2019 Xtracon Chess Open in Denmark. To become a Grandmaster, Vaishali needs to raise her rating to 2500 and come up with another GM-norm performance.
Winning start for Arjun Erigaisi
Sixth seed Arjun Erigaisi continued his march towards the coveted 2700-mark in rating by upstaging Alexei Shirov in 41 moves in the first round of the TePe Sigeman round-robin chess tournament in Malmo, Sweden, on Tuesday.
The National champion, rated 2675, is part of a strong 8-player field that not only presents a good mix of youth and experienced campaigners but also boasts of an average rating of 2681. The victory over the 2000 World championship runner-up to Viswanathan Anand has helped the 18-year-old reach 58th in the live rankings of the world.
The only other winner of the day was Arjun’s second-round rival and fourth seed Saleh Salem (UAE). The tournament regulations prohibit players from agreeing to a draw before the 41st move.
- First round : Arjun Erigaisi bt Alexei Sherov (Esp); Saleh Salem (UAE) bt David Navara (Cze); Hans Moke Niemann (USA) drew with Michael Adams (Eng); Nils Grandelius (Swe) drew with Jorden van Foreest (Ned).
D. Gukesh scored his fourth victory in five rounds by dismissing Georgian Grandmaster Nino Batsiashvili in 39 moves to emerge as the leader at 4.5 points in the Chessable Sunway International chess tournament in Punta Prima, Spain, on Tuesday.
The other four overnight leaders, including K. Sasikiran, were involved in draws on the top two boards.
Playing black, Sasikiran drew with Ruiz Miguel Santos (Spain) in 21 moves while Soham Das got the better of Oleg Romanishin (Ukr) in 53 moves for a third straight victory.