Xiong Jeffery, Saduakassova Win World Junior Titles
By Arvind Aaron
Xiong Jeffery of the United States of America and Dinara Saduakassova of Kazakhstan won the Kiit sponsored World Junior Chess Championship that concluded at Bhubaneswar in India on August 21, 2016.
‘While Jeffery won with a round to spare and by a one point margin, Saduakassova won after a close fight and half point margin.
Saduakassova had previously been World Under-14 and Under-18 champion in 2010 and 2014. Born on Oct 31, 1996 in Astana, she played in four Chess Olympiads.
Xiong Jeffery is born on Oct 30, 2000 at Plano in Texas, USA is the youngest to win the World Junior title. He is the seventh American to win this title and the first in the last two decades. Tal Shaked won this event last in 1997.
Hosts India had two medals, seed No.24 P.V. Nandhidhaa winning the silver medal in the girls’ section and tenth seed S.L. Narayanan winning the bronze medal in the World Junior Open section.
Vladislav Artemiev of Russia won the silver medal defeating Aravindh Chithambaram (8) in board two. S.L. Narayanan finished on a winning note beating Grzegorz of Poland for the bronze medal on better tie-break. After losing to an untitled Iranian in round eight, Narayanan won the last three rounds in a row for a medal.
Medals split was three for Asia, two for Europe and one for Americas. Clearly, Asians, mainly Indians benefited from this event being staged in Asia and India. Players from 36 nations took part in this event that was organised by the Odisha State Chess Association.
Nandhidhaa who started well also finished strongly to take the second place with nine points. She was the only player out of six who played the last round on eight points to win the game! She defeated last year’s champion Nataliya Buksa of Ukraine with the black pieces.
Nandhidhaa gains 85.6 Elo points and played at 2395. It was her career best show. Defeats to two Asian opponents, Michelle Catherina and Uuriintuva (Mgl) cost her the title. She drew with the champion Saduakassova in a third round game where she enjoyed some advantage.
Final placings in tie-break order:
Open: 1 GM Xiong Jeffery (USA) 10.5; 2 GM Vladislav Artemiev (Rus) 9.5; 3-4. GM S.L. Narayanan (Ind), FM Xu Yi (Chn) 9 each; 5-9. GM Karthikeyan Murali (Ind), IM Masoud Mosadeghpour (Iri), Xu Yingiun (Chn), IM Nasuta Grzegorz (Pol) , IM Svane Rasmus (Ger) 8.5 each; 10-13. GM Aravindh Chithambaram (Ind), Parham Maghsoodloo (Iri), Bozidar Ivekovic (Cro), IM Shahin Lorparizangeneh (Iri) 8 each.
Girls: 1 WGM Dinara Saduakassova (Kaz) 9.5/13; 2-3. WIM P.V. Nandhidhaa (Ind), WIM Dinara Dordzhieva (Rus) 9 each; 4-8. IM Reuda Paula Andrea Rodriguez (Col), WIM Frayna Janelle Mae (Phi), WIM R Vaishali (Ind), WIM Uuriintuva Uurtsaikh (Mgl), WIM Parnali Dharia (Ind) 8.5 each; 9-13. WIM Alina Bivol (Rus), WIM P Michelle Catherina (Ind), WIM M Mahalakshmi (Ind), WIM Anna Styazhkina (Rus), Du Yuxin (Chn) 8 each.