Negi beats Jha for sole lead

Negi beats Jha for sole lead

Playing with black pieces in English Opening, Grandmaster Negi outwitted his fellow Delhiite in 44 moves.

Meanwhile, overnight joint leader Russian GM Maletin Pavel signed peace treaty in 31 moves with top seed and compatriot GM Alexey Dreev.

A pack of five players, including former world junior champion GM Abhijeet Gupta and GM RR Laxman, trail the leader by half a point.

Gupta got the better of International Master Paciencia Enrique of Singapore while Laxman overcame Russian GM Dmitry Kokarev in their respective encounters.

GM Eltaj Safarli of Azerbaijan, who defeated IM MR Lalith Babu, is now giving company to Gupta and Laxman along with GMs Kravtsiv Martyn of Ukraine and Pavel at joint third spot.
In other seventh round matches, Jharkhand youngster Abhishek Das overcame GM Marat Dzhumaev while K Priyadharshan suffered his first defeat in the championship at the hands of Uzbek Saidali Iuldachev.