Isle of Man Masters: R Praggnanandhaa stuns Pavel Eljanov; Viswanathan Anand, Vidit Gujrathi held


Of the 19 gamers who had achieved an unblemished 2/2 after the primary two rounds on the Isle of Man Masters, solely six managed to maintain their good rating after spherical three. The pack is at present led by French primary, Maxime Vachier-Lagrave, who’s adopted by Wang Hao, Arkadij Naiditsch, Jeffery Xiong, Erwin L’ami and Pavel Tregubov.

India’s wunderkind, GM R Praggnanandhaa scored the most important upset of the day by taking down GM Pavel Eljanov of Ukraine. Rated 2703, Eljanov is just not solely about 200 factors greater rated than Praggnanandhaa, however he’s additionally one of many former winners of the occasion.

The sport hadn’t begun very promisingly for Praggnanandhaa. Eljanov had opened with the Richter-Rauzer variation of the Sicilian with the black items and had a snug place out of the opening. Praggnanandhaa’s try to create play on the kingside was aptly countered by Eljanov with a pawn break within the centre. By the 26th transfer, the Ukrainian grandmaster was a pawn forward and had full management over the place.

R Praggnanandhaa scored a serious upset defeating elite GM Pavel Eljanov. John Saunders

However simply when it appeared Praggnanandhaa was in a little bit of bother, he discovered a strategy to complicate the place. Taking a web page off Vidit Gujrathi’s ebook, Praggnanandhaa essayed an ingenious queen sacrifice that led to an unclear place. After the haze had cleared, Praggananandhaa had emerged an trade forward within the materials rely. Eljanov had only one pawn to compensate for this however his related handed pawns on the kingside seemed significantly threatening.

Within the closing part of the sport, Praggnanandha rushed to create a handed pawn of his personal to generate ample counterplay in an effort to stymie Black’s kingside passers. As soon as this was completed, changing the sport was solely a matter of approach.

GM Abhijeet Gupta’s additionally scored a half upset on the sixth board holding the previous world championship challenger, GM Boris Gelfand to a draw. Gupta had the white items in a Semi Slav Defence whereby he got here up with a brand new concept within the line that entailed a pawn sacrifice on his 17th flip.

The complicated center sport that consequently arose gave Gupta a pleasant initiative. Gelfand reacted effectively, discovering all the correct strikes to maintain issues beneath management. However the sport remaining difficult, effectively into the endgame. Either side had handed pawns on reverse wings. Gelfand even gave up a chunk on his 37th transfer to expedite the development of his pawns.

Gupta additionally went toe to toe with the world championship challenger, returning the piece at a well timed second after which gave a chunk sacrifice of his personal to drive issues. By the 50th transfer, Gelfand was compelled to commerce off his final pawn and accept a draw although he had a full further piece within the closing place.

With this draw, each Gupta and Gelfand slipped right down to the second spot on the leaderboard the place they continue to be tied with 18 others.

Vidit Gujrathi, who was one of many leaders going into the third spherical, had proven glorious type to date. Each of his preliminary video games featured enterprising sacrificial play. However within the third spherical, he agreed to a quite insipid draw towards his countryman, GM Vaibhav Suri. In a Gruenfeld Defence, the gamers drew by repetition merely 16 strikes into the sport.

Viswanathan Anand’s sport towards Svane Rasmus wasn’t a lot totally different both. Anand additionally had the black items and simply determined to name it a day after 24 strikes.

Whereas a draw, per se, is not a foul end result, it’s simply the size of the video games that could be a little regarding. The event observes a 30 transfer no draw supply rule however, apparently, a transfer repetition is a straightforward excuse round it.

Each Vidit and Anand had been greater than 100 Elo factors greater rated than their opponents and, within the spirit of the sport, might have fought a bit longer. Additionally, since that is an open occasion, these simply conceded half factors would possibly effectively hang-out them later within the event.

Indian gamers within the joint second place embody Vidit Gujrathi, Vaibhav Suri, Adhiban Baskaran and R Praggnanandhaa. Viswanathan Anand is one spot additional down the leaderboard with a rating of two.0/3.

Game of spherical 3

Standings after Round 3.

Standings after Spherical 3.

Aditya Pai is an editor at ChessBase India

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