Humpy, Vaishali star in India ‘A’ win over Georgia


India’s top player Koneru Humpy and R Vaishali led the women’s ‘A’ team to a 3-1 win over a strong Georgian side in the sixth round of the 44th Chess Olympiad here on Wednesday. In the Open section, teenaged Grandmaster D Gukesh’s splendid run continued as he notched up a sixth consecutive win, but India ‘B’ went down 1.5-2.5 to former champions Armenia. He put it across Gabriel Sargissian but could not prevent the team from going down as B Adhiban and Raunak Sadhwani suffered defeats at the hands of Samvel Ter-Sahakyan and Robert Hovhannisyan respectively.

Nihal Sarin drew his match against Hrant Melkumyan. It was the formidable India ‘B’ team’s first loss in the competition. The India ‘C’ team recorded an emphatic 3.5-0.5 win over Lithuania as S P Sethuraman, Abhijeet Gupta and Abhimanyu Puranik beat their opponents and the experienced Surya Shekhar Ganguly drew against Titas Stremavicius. Humpy defeated Nana Dzagnidze in 42 moves, Vaishali scored a win over Lela Javakhshvilli, while D Harika and Tania Sachdev settled for draws against Nino Batsiashvili and Salome Melia in the clash between the top-seeded India ‘A’ and No.3 seeds Georgia. In the Open event, top-ranked USA defeated Iran 2.5-1.5 riding on Fabiano Caruana’s win over Parham Maghsoodloo, while the games on the other three boards ended in draws. Meanwhile, fourth-ranked Spain settled for a 2-2 draw against 32nd-ranked Cuba. Australia shocked the Magnus Carlsen-led Norway, ranked No.3, securing a 2.5-1.5 win as the European nation continued to struggle.