Venkatesh remains in charge

Grandmaster M R Venkatesh tamed International Master P Kartikeyan to keep himself one point clear in the leaderboard after round eight of the National Premier Chess Championship on Tuesday.

Venkatesh had little difficulty in putting it across Kartikeyan in a Scotch defence on the top board to make it 6.5 points, and he was followed by GM Deep Sengupta, IM Swapnil Dhopade, GM G N Gopal and GM Sahaj Grover. National under-25 champion Swapnil of Railways drew with GM Deep Sengupta with the black pieces in 38 moves in a Sicilian defence.

GM G N Gopal made short work of IM S Satyap­ragyan in a sharp tactical game which arose from the Sicilian defence. GM Sahaj Grover showed his class by shattering G Akash’s kingside with a bishop sacrifice on move 14 in a closed Sicilian.

Results (Round VIII): GM M R Venkatesh (6.5) bt IM P Kartikeyan (5); GM Deep Sengupta (5.5) drew IM Swapnil Dhopade (5.5); GM G N Gopal (5.5) bt IM S Satyapragyan (4.5); GM Abhijit Kunte (5) drew FM Anurag Mhamal (5); GM Sahaj Grover (5.5) drew G Akash (4.5); IM Vidit Gujarathi (5) drew GM S Arun Prasad (5); GM B Adhiban (4.5) drew IM Debashis Das (4.5); GM Dibyendu Barua (4) lt to GM Deepan Chakraborty (5); GM S P Sethuraman (4.5) bt GM S Kidambi (4); Bitan Banerjee (4) drew GM Neelotpal Das (4); GM Praveen Thipsay (4.5) bt FM V A V Rajesh (3.5); FM Aravindh Chithambaram (4) drew FM Diptayan Ghosh (4); IM Swayams Mishra (3.5) drew S L Narayanan (4); M L Abhilash Reddy (3) lt to GM M R Lalith Babu (4); IM Saptarshi Roy (4) bt C R G Krishna (3); Sagar Shah (3.5) bt Pratik Patil (2); IM C Praveen Kumar (3) lt to K Praneeth Surya (4); Suvrajit Saha (3) drew Sashikant Kutwal (3.5); B T Murali Krishnan (3) drew Ram S Krishnan (3); S Ravi Teja (3) drew Murali Kartikeyan (3); WGM Mary Ann Gomes (3.5) bt Sohan Phadke (2); Arindam Mukherjee (3) (bye).

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