Favorites Lead Dubai Open Rd 2. Women Players Score Upsets

Wednesday, April 5, 2017
Favorites Lead Dubai Open Rd 2. Women Players Score Upsets

Favorites continued to win but women players upset higher rated men in round 2 of the Dubai Open Chess Championship at the Dubai Chess Club in Dubai.

On top board, GM Alexander Areshchenko used the Gruenfeld Defense exchange variation against R. Luxman of India and sacrificed his Rook for Bishop on the 37th move. He gave another piece on the 44th move to reach the endgame two pawns ahead. Luxman could not stop pawn promotion with his lone Knight and resigned on the 58th move.

Areshchenko and 37 other players lead with perfect 2 points including women Tania Sachdev of India, Tijana Blagojevic of Montenegro and Karen Grigoryian of Turkmenistan. Blagojevic smashed the Sicilian defense of GM Jan Christian Schroeder of Germany in 34 moves. Grigoriyan crushed the Semi Slav defense of GM Aleksandar Indjic of Serbia in 33 moves. Sachdev beat compatriot V. Pranav. Woman IM Padmini Rout of India, rated 2400, also stopped a high rated player by holding third seed GM Eltaj Safarli, rated 2680, to a draw by repetition of position in 36 moves of a Ruy Lopez game.

Tied for the lead with 2 points each are GMs Areshchenko, David Anton Guijarro of Spain, Vladimir Akopian, Gabriel Sargissian and Tigran Kotanjan of Armenia, Eduiardo Iturrizaga Bonelli of Venezuela, Gawain Jones of England, Vidit Santosh Gujrathi, Abhijeet Gupta, Deepan Chakkravarthy and SL Narayanan of India, Aleksandr Rakhmanov and Mikhail Antipov of Russia, Bassem Amin, Abdelrahman Hesham  and Ahmed Adly of Egypt, Sandro Mareco and Alan Pichot of Argentina, Mustafa Yilmaz and Emre Can of Turkey, Mikheil Mchedlishvi and Levan Pantsulaia of Georgia, Aryan Tari of Norway and Alexandr Fier of Brazil.

Also with 2 points are IMs Jaime Santos Latasa of Spain, Xu Xiangyu of China, Alireza Firouzja of Iran, Johan Salomon of Norway, R. Praggnanandhaa, R.N. Vignesh and Viani Antonio Dcunha of India, Vugal Asadli of Azerbaijan and Haridas Pascua and Oliver Dimakiling of the Philippines

A record 150 players from 40 countries are competing in the 9 round Swiss. The biggest delegation is from India with 91 players followed by Turkmenistan with 14 players, 9 from the UAE and 8 from Azerbaijan. Among the women, 6 Women Grandmasters and 6 Women International masters and 11 Woman FIDE masters are seeing action.

The tournament is held under the Patronage of Sheikh Rashid Bin Hamdan Bin Rashid Al Maktoum. At stake is a total of $50,000 in cash prizes. Games are scheduled 5:30 pm daily except on Friday. Two rounds are scheduled on Saturday at 10am and 6pm. Visit chess-results.com for pairings, results and standings.

Photo: Luxman (left) vs. Areshchenko