Vijayalakshmi jumps to joint lead in Asian Women's Chess

Vijayalakshmi jumps to joint lead in Asian Women's Chess

Former national champion S Vijayalakshmi continued her good run and defeated Zhang Xiaowen of China to jump to joint lead after the end of the fourth round of Asian Continental Women's Chess Championship here.

On a comeback trail after a long hiatus, Vijayalakshmi recently won the silver medal in the Commonwealth Chess Championship and her performance here thus far is a strong indication that the triple GM norm holder is going to impress some more.

The Indian now shares the lead with Atousa Pourkashiyan of Iran and Indonesian Aulia Medina Warda on on 3.5 points.

Playing the white side of a King's Indian defense, Vijayalakshmi had no trouble in seizing the initiative in the middle game.

The Chinese player fought back but a white knight on sixth rank only added to her woes. Vijayalakshmi picked up a pawn and never looked back.

Another Indian Soumya Swaminathan also continued her good work in the championship and held Dinara Saduakassova of Kazakhstan.

Post her previous round victory over top seed Tan Zhngyi of China, Soumya now moves to three points to share the third place.

With five rounds still to come in the event, second seed Padmini Rout, Eesha Karavade and Mary Ann Gomes also have three points apiece but Tania Sachdev went out of contention after her second loss in four days.

Sachdev went down to Iranian girl Minoo Asgarizadeh in a game of fluctuating fortunes.

In the open section being held simultaneously, Indian Grandmasters Surya Shekhar Ganguly and V Vishnu Prasanna remained on joint lead following a draw between them after a tense affair.

However, Lin Chen of China and Darini Pouria of Iran joined the two overnight leaders in lead on 3.5 points after fine victories in the fourth round.

Commonwealth champion Abhijeet Gupta played an easy draw with black against Wang Chen of China to inch himself up to three points along with Vidit Gujrathi, Deep Sengupta and M R Lalith Babu.

Gujrathi was held to a draw by Idani Pouya of Iran while Sengupta and Lalith Babu bounced back with fine victories over Petr Kostenko of Kazakhstan and Enamul Hossain of Bangladesh respectively.

On the flip side from the Indian perspective, GM Sandipan Chanda went down to Darini.

Important and Indian results after Round 4 Open (Indians unless specified): V Vishnu Prasanna (3.5) drew with Surya Shekhar Ganguly (3.5); Vidit Santosh Gujrathi (3) drew with Pouya Idani (IRI, 3); Wang Chen (CHN, 3) drew with Abhijeet Gupta (3); A R Salem Saleh (UAE, 2.5) lost to Lin Chen (CHN, 3.5); Pouria Darini (IRI, 3.5) beat Sandipan Chanda (2.5); Le Quang Liem (VIE, 3) beat Abhijit Kunte (2); Azamat Utegaliyev (KAZ, 2.5) drew with K Sasikiran (2.5); Petr Kostenko (KAZ, 2) lost to Deep Sengupta (3); M R Lalith Babu (3) beat Enamul Hossain (BAN, 2); Yuan Qingyu (CHN, 2.5) drew with D Harika (2.5); Koneru Humpy (2.5) beat P Karthikeyan (2); SP Sethuraman (2.5) beat Wang Yiye (CHN, 1.5); G N Gopal (2) drew with K Rathnakaran (2); Marat Dzhumaev (UZB, 2) drew with S Nitin (2); Sunilduth Lyna Narayanan (2.5) beat Li Di (CHN, 1.5); Asgharzadeh M Reza (IRI, 1) lost to Debashis Das (2); Xu Xiangyu (CHN, 1.5) drew with MR Venkatesh (1.5).

Women: Aulia Medina Warda (INA, 3.5) drew with Atousa Pourkashiyan (IRI, 3.5); Soumya Swaminathan (3) drew with Dinara Saduakassova (KAZ, 3); S Vijayalakshmi (3.5) beat Zhang Xiaowen (CHN, 2.5); Mary Ann Gomes (3) drew with Shen Yang (CHN, 3); Padmini Rout (3) beat Sarvinoz Kurbonboeva (UZB, 2); Lei Tingjie (CHN, 3) beat Nisha Mohota (2); Bhakti Kulkarni (2) lost to Eesha Karavade (3); Guliskhan Nakhbayeva (KAZ, 2) lost to Pratyusha Bodda (3); Tania Sachdev (1.5) lost to Minoo Asgarizadeh (IRI, 2.5).  

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