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Adhiban has Magnus on the mat

Baskaran Adhiban is turning out to be the surprise packet of the Tata Steel Chess Tournament at Wijk aan Zee. The Chennai lad employed the Scandinavian Defence against World champion Magnus Carlsen in the 11th round and surprised the Scandinavian himself.

Adhiban has Magnus on the mat
B Adhiban (left) with Magnus Carlsen


The game went to such a level that the Indian even enjoyed a winning chance against the World No 1 but the game ended in a draw. From 11 games, Adhiban has six points which gives him precious Elo points as gain from the event. 

Adhiban had used rare openings such as Kings Gambit in this tournament to surprise his opponents. From one point from five games, he scored five in the next six to reach the current position. “For the last two rounds I had indulged in normal opening choices, so I decided to try something ‘stupid’ again! Hence, the Scandinavian!,” sadi Adhiban after the game. “It’s a pity that I missed Qg4 which was a winning move. I had seen it, A draw is a great result, could have been better, but I am happy with the outcome.” 

Adhiban’s more illustrious teammate Pentala Harikrishna took a draw from Anish Giri and was on 5.5 points. 

The game that lasted for over two hours saw the World No. 11 Indian engage in a tense battle and secure a crucial half point from the outing. He now has two more rounds to play. 

Harikrishna, starting in black found himself in trouble initially and his German opponent got into winning position. But mistakes from Anish saw help the Indian get back into the game and even though at the end it was Harikrishna who was in a comfortable position, the players had to settle for a draw due to lack of time. 

“Anish played strong novelty and got into winning position. But mistakes from him as well as me saw the game drift away. I got into better during the end moments of the game but still had to settle for a draw as the time was running out” Harikrishna said, after the game. 

The Indian star, with an Elo of 2770, has won one, drew nine while losing one game in the campaign so far. Harikrishna takes on er Richard Rapport next.

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