Winning start for India in Chess Olympiad

Chennai: Indian men beat lower rated Syria 3.5-0.5 in the first round match in the open section in the 41st World Chess Olympiad that kicked off in the Norwegian city of Tromse on Saturday.

According to information received here, the Indian women`s team made a clean 4-0 sweep against New Zealand.

Resting its highest rated player Grandmaster (GM) K Sasikiran (elo rating points 2,669) the Indian team entered the arena with GM Parimarjan Negi (2,645) on the first board, GM S.P. Sethuraman (2,590) on the second board, GM B. Adhiban (2,619) on the third and GM Lalith Babu M.R. (2,565) on the fourth board.

Playing with black against International Master (IM) Basher Lyti on the first board Negi had to fight it to equalise the position and then the match.

However, Sethuraman with white pieces made a quick work against Hasan Omrani and scored a decent victory. The third board saw Adhiban with black pieces against Khaled Akhras. The Indian player won in the end though enjoying an advantageous position throughout the play.

On the last board Lalith Babu with white pieces finished the game against Fide Master (FM) Ward Al-Tarbosh in 31 moves.

The average rating of the Syrian team was 2217 as against the Indian team`s 2605.

The Indian eves Tania Sachdev, Eesha Karavade, Mary Gomes and Padmini Rout did not have much trouble against their New Zealand opponents.

Ten more rounds remain to go in this fourth largest sporting event in the world in terms of number of participating countries. According to the organisers there are 174 countries fighting out over the 64 square board for victory.

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