World Youth Chess: Divya stays on recovery course; Praggnanandhaa, Rakshitta held

Divya Deshmukh notched up a second successive win, while R. Praganandhaa drew with Iran’s Aryan Gholami in the World Youth chess championship on Sunday.

M. Sreeshwan beat China’s Sun Jiajun in 34 moves to keep his hopes of progression alive at the World Youth Chess championship.   -  Special Arrangement

Ranking favourites M. Sreeshwan and Divya Deshmukh continued their act of redemption with a second successive win in their respective under-14 sections of the World Youth chess championship here.

Looking to make amends for the fourth round defeat, Sreeshwan and Divya scored contrasting victories on Sunday and kept alive chances of living up to their top billing. Sreeshwan punished China’s Sun Jiajun for a late miscalculation in 34 moves. Much later, Divya ended the resistance of Kazakh Liya Kurmangaliyeva in 53 moves.

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In under-18, second seed R. Praganandhaa (five points) was involved in a draw for a second time after facing fellow leader and third seed Iran’s Aryan Gholami for 39 moves. Top seed Shant Sargsyan moved to 4.5 points after beating Kazakh Ramazan Zhalmakhanov.

Creditably, Aditya Mittal, seeded 16, continued his unbeaten run by holding defending champion Viktor Gazik, seeded four.

On a day when all six top seeds won, two of the overnight leaders, girls’ under-14 second seed Rakshitta Ravi and under-16 eighth seed Aronyak Ghosh, drew.

Important sixth-round results (Indians unless stated):

Under-18: Aryan Gholami (Iri, 5) drew with R. Praggnanandhaa (5); Valentin Buckels (Ger, 4.5) drew with P. Iniyan (4.5); Viktor Gazik (Svk, 4) drew with Aditya Mittal (4.5); Ramazan Zhalmakhanov (Kaz, 3.5) lost to Shant Sargsyan (Arm, 4.5); Wang Shixu (Chn, 4) drew with Arjun Kalyan (3.5); R. K. Srihari (3.5) lost to Mitrabha Guha (4.5).

Under-16: Rudik Makarian (Rus, 5.5) bt Arash Daghli (Iri, 4.5); Stefan Pogosyan (Rus, 4.5) drew with Aronyak Ghosh (4.5); Emirhan Tarlabasi (Tur, 3.5) lost to Kushagra Mohan (4.5); Moksh Doshi (4.5) bt Gabriele Lumachi (Ita, 3.5).

Under-14: Aditya Samant (4.5) lost to Aydin Suleymanli (Aze, 5.5); V. Pranav (4.5) drew with Pranav Anand (4.5); Sun Jiajun (Chn, 4) lost to M. Sreeshwan (5); L. R. Srihari (5) bt Alex Kolay (4); Aaryan Varshney (4) lost to R. Abhinandhan (5).

Girls’ Under-18: Viktoria Radeva (Bul, 4) lost to Polina Shuvalova (Rus, 5); Vantika Agarwal (4.5) bt A. Harshini (3.5); Aashna Makhija (4) drew with Alexandra Obolentaseva (Rus, 4).

Girls’ Under-16: Nazerke Nurgali (Kaz, 5) drew with Anousha Mahdian (Iri, 5); Viktoriya Loskutova (Rus, 4) lost to Leya Garifullina (Rus, 5.5); B. Mounika Akshaya (4.5) drew with Alessia-Mihaela Ciolocu (Rou, 4.5); Mehendi Sil (4.5) drew with Saina Salonika (4.5).

Girls’ Under-14: Rakshitta Ravi (5) drew with Eline Roebers (Ned, 5); Anna Lhotska (Cze, 4) lost to Ekaterina Nasyrova (Rus, 5); V. Sarayu (4) lost to Dhyana Patel (5); Liya Kurmangaliyeva (Kaz, 3.5) lost to  Divya Deshmukh (4.5); Martyna Wikar (Pol, 4) drew with Bhagyashree Patil (4).