Rapid blitzes apart, India not really classical

The triumphant Indian team.-

India is a dominant force in age-group events in international chess and the story wasn’t any different this time either.

India flexed its muscles yet again at the Asian Youth Chess Championship. In Tashkent, the capital of Uzbekistan, India finished overall champion, winning seven gold, four silver and seven bronze medals, across classical, rapid and blitz events.

India is a dominant force in age-group events in international chess and the story wasn’t any different this time either. “We should have done much better, in fact,” said India’s coach T. J. Suresh Kumar. “It was nerves in the final round of the classical events that marred our medals tally.”

India still picked up six medals in the classical event. There was only one gold though, won by Sanskruti Wankhade in the Girls’ Under-8 event, despite losing in the last round.

India fared better in the rapid section, with gold medals by Priyanka Nutakki (Under-12 girls), Nihal Sarin (Under-10 boys) and Aditya Mittal (Under-8 boys). In the blitz competitions, Nihal Sarin (under-10 boys), Nikhil Ramakrishnan (under-6 boys) and Divya Deshmukh (under-10 girls) won gold.

Suresh said it was a very-well contested affair in Tashkent. “The children were very well taken care of by the organisers. Food and accommodation were excellent and there was no room for any complaint.”

P. K. Ajith Kumar