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Hari draws, Adhiban loses in Tata Steel Chess

Grandmaster Pentala Harikrishna eked out an easy draw against Sergey Karjakin of Russia in the fourth round to be bracketed in the middle of the table in the Tata Steel Chess tournament at Wijk aan Zee.

Hari draws, Adhiban loses in Tata Steel Chess
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Pentala Harikrishna

Chennai

The World No. 11 was locked in a dull battle for just under two hours for his half point. He now has a total tally of 2.5 points and was in the joint third position. Four players, including overnight leader Pavel Eljanov of Ukraine and World No. 1 Magnus Carlsen of Norway, and Wesley So of the US edged past him after winning their fourth-round games. 

Eljanov was the sole leader with 3.5 points after he beat India’s Baskaran Adhiban. Harikrishna, playing white, looked to open up the game but Karjakin had other plans: he was playing for a draw.  “Nothing much happened in the game. We played a similar one during the Olympiad but Karjakin chose a6 instead of a5 and slowly all pieces got exchanged,” Harikrishna said, after the match. 

The Indian star, with an ELO of 2770, had notched up one victory, against his Indian counterpart Adhiban Baskaran, and two draws, against World No. 7 Levon Aronian of Armenia and Eljanov, before this game. Harikrishna will take on So Weseley of the US on Thursday, after a day of well-earned rest, with black. Tata Steel Chess is an elite tournament in this northern town of The Netherlands, popularly known as the Wimbledon of chess. In the Masters section, 14 Grand Masters pit their brains against each other in 13 rounds.

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