The 48th Edition of Indian Women National Championship concluded today at Sanjay Ghodawat University Kolhapur. WGM Divya Deshmukh (MAH) repeated history by successfully defending her title. She defeated IM Bhakti Kulkarni (Goa) in the final round to become a clear champion 9.5/11. WGM Mary Ann Gomes (PSPB) finished second 9/11 by winning against WIM Rucha Pujari (MAH) and WGM Vantika Agrawal (DEL) defeated IM Nisha Mohota (PSPB) to finish third 8.5/11. Since 2011, every National Women’s champion have won the title at leasts twice in-a-row, and Divya maintained that record.
The Top Five Boards of the last round ended in decisive results where Divya blown Bhakti’s rock solid Modern Defense: Standard, Two Knights Variation to finish on the Top Spot. Mary Ann Gomes of PSPB won her hard fought game against local favouriate WIM Rucha Pujari in an English Opening: Neo-Catalan variation. Top seeded Vantika Agrawal of Delhi was up against IM Nisha Mohota of PSPB where Vantika started off the game with Réti Opening: Nimzo-Larsen Variation and won it comfortably and managed a podium finish. WIM Sakshi Chitlange of Maharashtra and WIM Isha Sharma of Karnataka also won their games comfortably against Nimmy AG and Vishwa Shah respectively.
The Total Prize fund of the event was INR 30,00,000/- where Divya bagged home a cash prize of INR 6,00,000/- and a glittering trophy. The Detailed prize winners list is as follows :
Winner : WGM Divya Deshmukh (ELO :2347) of Maharashtra INR 600,000/-
Runner Up : WGM Gomes Mary Ann (ELO :2320) of PSPB INR 500,000/-
Second Runner Up : WGM Vantika Agrawal (ELO :2352) of Delhi INR 400,000/-
4th Place : WIM Chitlange Sakshi (ELO :2213) of Maharashtra INR 300,000/-
5th Place : WIM Sharma Isha (ELO :2212) of Karnataka INR 250,000/-
6th Place : IM Kulkarni Bhakti (ELO :2319) of Goa INR 250,000/-
7th Place : IM Soumya Swaminathan (ELO :2322) of PSPB INR 200,000/-
8th Place : WGM Srija Seshadri (ELO :2204) of Tamil Nadu INR 200,000/-
9th Place : WIM Arpita Mukherjee (ELO :2211) of West Bengal INR 150,000/-
10th Place : WGM Varshini V (ELO :2141) of Tamil Nadu INR 150,000/-
The arbiters team was lead by International Arbiter Manjunatha, M. from Karnataka. He was assisted by IA Vinita Shrotri , FA Mohit Ladhe, FA Atharva Godbole, FA Pornima Upalavikar, FA Sumukh Gaikwad (All from Maharashtra) along with FA Neeraj Kumar Mishra from Jharkhand. Vinayak Bhosale – Trustee SGU, Arun Patil – Principal, Dr. Virat Giri – Principal SGP, Amit Kodak, Swapnil Akole from Sanjay Ghodawat University along with IA Bharat Chougule (Tournament Director), Manish Marulkar – Organizing Secretary, Dhiraj Vaidya, Aarti Modi, Karan Parit, Rohit Pol, Prashant Pise, Aaditya Altekar and a team of Volunteers from SGU MBA College took meticulous efforts to make this event a grand success.
The Tournament was organized by Chess Association Kolhapur under the aegis of World Chess Federation, All India Chess Federation, Maharashtra Chess Association & Kolhapur District Chess Association at the Sanjay Ghodawat University, Kolhapur. The MPL Sports Foundation was title sponsor of the event while Sanjay Ghodawat University served as Co-Sponsor for the Championship. Chitale Dairy, H2e Systems Pune, Jain Irrigation, Firodia Group were the Associate Sponsors for the event.