Samarth clinches bronze at IPCA meet

Samarth clinches bronze at IPCA meet

 Karnataka’s Samarth J Rao brought laurels to the country winning a bronze medal in the junior boys category of the 15th International Physically Disabled Chess Association (IPCA) World Individual Chess Championship in Bratislava, Slovakia, on Friday.

The 15-year-old from Karwar, who suffers from cerebral palsy, fought off stiff competition from a host of players with better ELO ratings to finish third behind Tersinsev Andrey (2202) of Russia and Lipilin Ilia (1631), also of Russia. The tournament was Samarth’s first international event.

En route to the third place, Samarth (ELO rating 1268) defeated Dominik Chmelo and Erika Kostova of Slovakia. He drew with Viktor Strekalovski (2016) of Russia, Harry Kestlane (1776) of Estonia and WIM Galina Melnik (1936) of Russia. He lost to Stefan Belak  (1985) of Slovakia, Denis Denisov (1913) of Russia and WIM Marina Kaydanovich (1837) of Russia.

The youngster, a 10th standard student of Govt High School, Honnavar, was coming off the back of a good showing at the National-level championship in April at Tiruchirappalli, where he won the silver medal. Samarth, who idolises Viswanathan Anand, is the son of Jagadish Rao B S, a Syndicate Bank employee, and Vinutha Bhat, a State government employee.

“We are happy that he is able to perform at such events but it has been tough financially,” said Vinutha. “We are a middle class family and spending big amounts to send him for every international event is beyond us,” she said, looking forward to some support from the government.

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