Team India misses medal by a whisker

FIDE World Team Championship 2019

It turned out to be a disappointing final round for the Indian men as they went downing fighting against Russia 1.5-2.5 in the ninth and final round of the FIDE World Team Chess Championship, Asthana, Kazakhstan on Thursday.

In an epic battle against India, the Russian team seemed on the verge of losing, before Ian Nepomniachtchi eventually saved his position to a draw and Alexander Grischuk won his game. With this 2,5-1,5 loss, India unluckily had to cede the bronze medal to China, which overcame Kazakhstan by a thread. The silver medal went to England, which convincingly beat Sweden.

Bo. 9   Russia Rait one   India Rait 2½: 1½
5.1 GM
Karjakin, Sergey
2753 GM
Adhiban, B.
2683 ½ – ½
5.2 GM
Nepomniachtchi, Ian
2771 GM
Ganguly, Surya Shekhar
2633 ½ – ½
5.3 GM
Grischuk, Alexander
2771 GM
Sethuraman, SP
2637 ten
5.4 GM
Andreikin, Dmitry
2725 GM
Aravindh, Chithambaram Vr.
2599 ½ – ½

Both gold medals had already attributed one day before the end to Russia in the open section.

The team captain, GM Srinath Narayanan, said: “Fourth place is quite disappointing after the way we played throughout. For the effort exerted, the result doesn’t seem equitable. However, it indicates that we’ve come a long way forward, considering how disappointed we feel with a 4th place finish in such a tournament. It is only set to get better as time progresses.”

On a positive note, GM Adhiban Baskaran and GM Surya Shekar Ganguly both secured individual golds on boards one and three respectively.

Meanwhile, in the women’s championship, the Indian women’s team finished sixth on nine points after settling for a 2-2 draw with Hungary in the final round. Soumya Swaminathan lost to Anita Gara on the second board while Bhakti Kulkarni defeated Bianka Havanecz to level scores. The other two games were drawn.

China scored 18 points, Russia played out a draw with Georgia to reach 14 points and bagged the silver while the Georgians won bronze on 12 points and a better tiebreak than Ukraine.

The team captain, GM Swapnil Dhopade, said: “Indian women’s team finished sixth which is not a great result considering the chances we had in most matches. There were some results which could have ended in our favor, for example, matches against Russia and Georgia. However, all the team members gave their best and surely in the future team events we have a lot of scope for improvement.”

Final Ranking: Open

Rnk. Team MP Pts.
1 Russia 16 23½
2 England 13 21
3 China 12 21
4 India 11 22
5 United States of America 11 20½
6 Iran 8 18
7 Azerbaijan 8 16½
8 Kazakhstan 4 14½
9 Sweden 4 10½
10 Egypt 3 12½

Final Ranking: Women

Rank Team MP Points
1 China 18 26½
2 Russia 14 26
3 Georgia 12 23
4 Ukraine 12 20½
5 Kazakhstan 10 18½
6 India 9 20
7 United States of America 7 15
8 Armenia 4 15
9 Hungary 4 11½
10 Egypt 0 4

Photos: Official Website