Astana (Kazakhstan): Grandmaster B Adhiban crushed higher-rated Amin Bassem on the top board as Indian men cruised to a 3.5-0.5 victory over Egypt in the third round of World teams chess championship here. Continuing their third outing without Tania Sachdev, the Indian eves also had a fine day in the office as they defeated Armenia 2.5-1.5 to remain in contention for a medal.
Backed by an excellent result, the Indian men jumped to joint second spot in rankings on five points out of a possible six match points and they now only trail top seeds Russia that won over defending champion China by a minimal 2.5-1.5 margin. With Russia on six points, England, United States and India now share the second spot jointly on five match points apiece.
Iran and Kazkhstan come next in line on three points each, while China is currently on the seventh spot with just two points from three matches. Azerbaijan is the other high-profile team on just one point on the eighth spot while the local hopefuls Kazakhstan and Egypt complete the cellar.
The Indian victory was expected but not the way it came. National Champion Aravindh Chithambaram got his first game and did not disappoint in carving out a victory while Adhiban gave an early lead to the team upscaling the African top player along with Surya Ganguly who was clinical in his approach in downing Fawzy Adham.
Krishnan Sasikiran was held to a draw by former world junior champion Ahmed Adly, a result the seasoned campaigner will not mind. The Russian mean upstaged China with Ian Nepomniachtchi coming good against Yu Yangyi on the second board. The remaining three draws suited the Russian who now have a strong claim to the title.
In the women’s section, Russia and China continued to lead, disposing Egypt and Kazakhstan respectively. While the Russian women won with a 4-0 margin, the Chinese eves came up with a minimal 2.5-1.5 victory over the local girls.Ukrainia hold the third spot here currently with a 3-1 victory over Hungary on five points and the Indian women hold fourth position with four points.
For India, Padmini Rout found her form as she scored her first victory, while Bhakti Kulkarni also continued her good work on the last board. The Team will be bolstered by Tania Sachdev joining them from next round. Tania had reported sick for the first three matches. Earlier, Adhiban had downed world junior champion Parham Maghsoodloo as India settled for a 2-2 draw with Iran.
Idani Pouya turned out to be the saviour for Iran as he defeated the experienced Krishnan Sasikiran on the second board while Surya Shekhar Ganguly and S P Sethuraman played out draws with Amin Tabatabae and Firouza Alireza on the third and fourth board. In the women’s section, India were held 2-2 by the local stars from Kazakhstan.
Bhakti Kulkarni kept things under control against Gulmira Dauletova to secure an important full point in a close encounter. Eesha Karavade played out a draw on the top board with Zhansaya Abdumalik while on the second, Soumya Swaminathan did her bit, drawing with Dinara Saduakassova. On the third board however, Padmini Rout failed to find her form for the second day running, as she was beaten by Bibisa Assaubayeva.
Results round 3 open: Egypt (0) lost to India (5) 0.5-3.5 (Amin Bassem lost to B Adhiban; K Sasikiran drew with Adly Ahmed; Fawzy Adham lost to S S Ganguly; A Chithambaram beat Imed Abdelnabbi); Iran (3) beat Sweden (0) 3.5-0.5; China (2) lost to Russia (6) 1.5-2.5; England (5) drew with USA (5) 2-2; Kazakhstan (3) drew with USA (5) 2-2. Women: India (4) beat Armenia (2) 2.5-1.5 (Eesha karavade drew with Elina Danilian; Soumya Swaminathan lost to Lilit Mkrtchian; Anna Sargsyan lost to Padmini Rout; Bhakti Kulkarni beat Maria Gevorgyan); Russia (6) beat Egypt (0) 4-0; China (6) beat Kazakhstan (1) 2.5-1.5; USA (3) lost to Georgia (3) 0.5-3.5; Ukraine (5) beat Hungary (0) 3-1.
Results round 2 open: India (3) drew with Iran (1) 2-2 (B Adhiban beat Parham Maghsoodloo; Idani Pouya beat Krishnan Sasikiran; Surya Shekhar Ganguly drew with Amin Tabatabae; Alireza Firouza drew with S P Sethuraman); Sweden (0) lost to Kazakhstan (2) 1-3; Azerbaijan (0) lost to England (4) 1.5-2.5; Russia (4) beat Egypt (0) 3-1; USA (3) beat China (2) 2.5-1.5.
Women: Kazakhstan (1) drew with India (2) (Zhansaya Abdumalik drew with Eesha Karavade; Soumya Swaminathan drew with Dinara Saduakassova; Bibsa Assaubayeva beat Padmini Rout; Bhakti Kulkarni beat Gulmira Dauletova); Hungary (0) lost to United States (3) 1-3; Georgia (1) lost to China (4) 1.5-2.5; Armenia (2) lost to Russia (4) 0.5-3.5; Egypt (0) lost to Ukraine (3) 0-4; USA (4) beat China.