Kulkarni, Yashas surprise Grandmasters Varga, Thomas

Updated: Jun 03, 2010, 21:52 PM IST

Mumbai: India`s unheralded Rakesh Kulkarni
and D Yashas sprang major surprises in the Mumbai
Mayor`s Cup International Open chess tournament by defeating
Grandmasters Zoltan Varga of Hungary and Luther Thomas of
Germany respectively.

Maharashtra`s Kulkarni, with a much inferior ELO rating
of 2149, opted for the Queen`s Gambit opening and brought his
rival Varga (ELO 2479) to his knees.

Karnataka`s Yashas, with a ELO rating of 2204, outsmarted
his fancied German opponent Thomas (ELO 2541) in 56 moves at
the Goregaon Sports Club.

Maharashtra`s Sagar Shah (ELO 2265) also did well by
holding third Seed Turov Maxim (ELO 2624) of Russia to a draw
after taking a dominant position for the major portion of the

Two other foreign GMs were held to a draw by less fancied
Indian opponents in the tournament being held at the Goregaon
Sports Club.

Kerala`s O T Anilkumar (ELO 2241) forced GM Lafuente
Pablo (ELO 2587) of Argentina to accept a draw in 44 moves in
the game which started with Caro-Cann opening.

C M Prince Bajaj (ELO 2180) of Delhi held GM Simonian
Hrair (ELO 2521) of Armenia. In Sicilian Defense opening, the
queens were exchanged on the 34th move but it took Prince 40
more moves to sign the peace treaty.

Forty Grandmasters from 15 countries are taking part in
the Rs 13 lakh prize money event with the winner taking home
Rs 3 lakh. The top seed is Russian GM Alexei Dreev with a
rating of 2655.