Padmini Rout and D. Harika were involved in contrasting draws in Game One of their second round encounters of the Women World Chess Championship here on Tuesday.
If Harika, playing white, surprisingly drew in just 15 moves against the lower-rated Kazakh Dinara Saduakassova, Padmini produced a formidable defence with black pieces against China’s Zhao Xue in their 46-move deadlock.
It may be recalled that Padmini had entered the second round by winning her opener 1.5-0.5 against Armenian favourite Elina Danielian and gained a day of rest. In contrast, Harika had to battle through Monday’s tie-break rapid games to outlast Bangladesh’s Akter Liza Shamima 2.5-1.5. Well rested after the early draw, Harika can be expected to play to her reputation with black on Wednesday.
On her part, Padmini continued to impress. She thwarted a kingside attack from the Chinese rival and, following simplification, maintained the balance of the position for the last 12 moves to come out with a creditable draw.
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