Ningbo, China: Indian men managed to beat a spirited Egypt in the eighth round to help themselves from occupying the bottom place in the World Team Chess Championships.
India won 2.5-1.5 with victories through P Harikrishna and Surya Shekhar Ganguly while Krishnan Sasikiran was held to a draw and G N Gopal had to concede defeat.
The victory did not help India`s cause too much as they are now at joint eighth in the 10-team event with Israel with eight points, ahead of Egypt who have lost all their matches so far.
For India, Harikrishna played his trademark endgame and Amin Baseem was no match. It was a Bogo-Indian defense and the game lasted 79 moves.
Much earlier, Surya Shekhar Ganguly gave an early lead at the expense of Samy Shoker. Ganguly played attacking chess with white pieces and won an exchange to force matters in 41 moves.
El Gindy Essam played out a draw with Sasikiran after winning a pawn while Gopal went down to Ezat Mohamed in 63 moves of a Grunfeld defense.
The Indian victory apart, it was a dramatic day in the premier team championship as holders Russia were outdone by hosts China 1.5-2.5. The victory for China came unexpectedly on the top board when Ukrainian turned Russian Sergey Karjakin went down to Wang Hao from a position of strength. The other three games were drawn.
In another reversal, United States cashed in on successes on the first and last board to beat Azerbaijan 2.5-1.5. Gata Kamsky won after a dogged defense against Teimour Radjabov on the top board while veteran Grandmaster Yasser Seirawan proved the value of experience over youth in crushing Shakhriyar Mamedyarov on the fourth board.
The lone saving grace for Azerbaijan was Rauf Mamedov who defeated Yuri Shulman while the other game of the match was drawn.
On a comeback trail, Ukraine beat Israel 2.5-1.5 to jump to joint second spot. Vassily Ivanchuk and Alexander Moiseenko won two important games for their team while Pavel Eljanov was on the receiving end.
With just two rounds to go in the tournament, Armenia, on 12 points, has a huge three points lead over China and Ukraine who have nine points apiece. The trio of Russia, Hungary and USA shares the fourth spot on eight points and Azerbaijan a distant seventh on six points.