Chotowa-Czarna: Grandmaster Parimarjan Negi suffered a crushing defeat against top seed Dmitry Andreikin but Padmini Rout kept herself in the medal contention after the ninth round of the world junior chess championship here on Friday.
Negi, who has been trying to find his form, could not match up to the guile of Russian Andreikin in the important game for him and was outplayed from an equal position.
The defeat proved quite expensive as Negi is now 1.5 point behind leader Andreikin and has just four rounds to catch up.
Andreikin remained in sole lead on 7.5 points and is now followed by Emilio Arturo Cordova Daza of Peru and Sanan Sjugirov of Russia who are a half-point behind.
A pack of six players are in close pursuit on 6.5 points and Negi is now joint tenth.
Meanwhile in the girls` championship being played simultaneously, Padmini Rout remained on course for a medal at the expense of Anya Corke of England.
Padmini took her tally to seven points out of a possible nine with the victory.
Anna Muzychuk of Slovenia continued to rule this section after defeating Sopiko Guramishvili of Georgia.
The Slovenian took her tally to an enviable eight points out of a possible nine and also extended her lead by a full point over nearest rivals.
Padmini, Olga Girya of Russia and Alisa Melekhina of United States share the second spot.
In the open section, S P Sethuraman raised vision of an improved finish defeating Kacper Piorun of Poland. Anwesh Upadhyaya lost to M R Lalith Babu while Swapnil Dhopade ended on the winning side against Davit Lomsadze of Georgia.
Debashish Das and Arun Karthik played out draws against their respective opponents.
Amongst the girls, Bhakti Kulkarni felll behind in the medal race going down to Olga Girya while B Pratyusha split the point with Aigerim Rysbayeva of Kazakhstan.
Negi went for the Queen`s gambit declined and Andreikin played it very safe in the opening with his half point lead.
Looking to complicate things, Negi opted for an Isolated queen pawn middle game but Andreikin was quite up to the task in finding right manoeuvres that led to favourable exchanges.
Negi lost the central pawn first and even the presence of opposite colour Bishops could not help him salvage the half point.
Anya Corke proved no match for Padmini in a French defense game where the Indian played white.
Going for a thematic king side attack, Padmini opened the king side in quick time and won a piece through a simple tactical stroke. The game lasted 42 moves.