Anand Held To Draw In Gibraltar Opener

Anand Held To Draw In Gibraltar Opener
By Arvind Aaron

Twenty Indians are competing in the Tradewise Gibraltar Masters section. India has the third most entries after Germany 25 and hosts England 23. There are 253 players in the Masters’ section.

This event has been voted the best Swiss format event in the world for three years. It is also voted the best tournament of last year by the Association of Chess Professionals.

Third seed Viswanathan Anand was held to a draw by International Master Lazarne Vajda Dzidonia of Hungary. Other higher seeds to make draws were sixth seed Yu Yangyi (Chn) and Surya S Ganguly, the 21st seed from India.

Facing a Slav defence, Anand as white could not refuse a draw on move 45 in a dead equal bishop ending with pawns on the same side.

Fourth seed P Harikrishna won against Alan Tate with black. Other Indian winners include Vidit Gujrathi (seed 23), S.P. Sethuraman (seed 25), Abhijeet Gupta (seed 32), Sandipan Chanda (seed 36), Lalith Babu (seed 45), G.N. Gopal (seed 51), Vishnu Prasanna (seed 53), D Harika (seed 58), S Kidambi (seed 59), Aravindh Chithambaram (seed 65).

In the lower half of the draw, the Indian winners were Prasanna Rao (seed 77), Padmini Rout (seed 91) and Anurag Mhamal (seed 115). Swayangsu Satyapragyan (seed 104) was among those who drew in the lower boards of round one.

Indians who were not favourites suffered defeats. It included Bodda Pratyusha (to Sethuraman) and Nisha Mohota. Eight rounds remain to be played in this nine round one round a day contest.