Negi, Gupta register wins in Asian chess

Ho Chi Minh (Vietnam): Grandmasters Parimarjan Negi and Abhijeet Gupta were back in contention with victories over Nguyen Anh Dung of Vietnam and Irwanto Sadikin of Indonesia, respectively, in the third round of Asian continental chess championship here.

Having lost the second round against John Paul Gomez of Philippines, Negi called the shots with his white pieces and got an advantage in the ensuing middle game against Dung who could only pose resistance towards the end of the game.

A slight inaccuracy by Negi went unnoticed as Dung missed his only chance and the Indian`s pieces were all over the local hopeful.

Like Negi, Gupta too had an unfamiliar start drawing the first and losing the second round against unheralded Chinese Wang Chen. In the third round however, Gupta showed his true mettle and outplayed Irwanto Sadikin of Indonesia in all departments of the game.

For the records it was a grunfeld defense wherein Gupta got the initiative after trading of queens. Sadikin was tempted to take his chances in the middle game but the plan boomeranged when Gupta forcibly won a pawn.

The rest was easy for the Indian national champion.

With six rounds still to go in the premier Asian event, the Chinese duo of Yu Yangyi and Liu Qingnan share the lead with a perfect score of three points.

India`s S P Sethuraman is the only Indian in proximity of the leaders on 2.5 points and shares the third spot, while Negi has 2 points.

In other games involving Indians, B Adhiban went down to Vietnam`s Nguyen Van Huy, while Kirill Kuderinov of Kazakhstan proved stronger than G N Gopal.

Vidit Gujrathi played out a draw with Wei Yi of China and Deepan Chakkravarthy maintained his all draw record in the championship after signing peace with Rinat Zumabayev of Kazakhstan.