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4th Cairns Cup R2: Harika Dronavalli outplays Alexandra Kosteniuk

by Shahid Ahmed - 15/06/2024

GM Harika Dronavalli got the upper hand out of the opening against GM Alexandra Kosteniuk (SUI) in the second round of 4th Cairns Cup 2024. She had no trouble converting her extra pawn advantage into a full point. GM Nana Dzagnidze (GEO) scored the only other win of the round. She capitalized on her opportunity when her opponent, IM Anna Zatonskih (USA) made a tactical error in the middlegame. GM Zhongyi Tan (CHN) and GM Irina Krush (USA) had a well-contested draw. GM Elisabeth Paehtz (GER) and IM Alice Lee (USA) played a back and forth game which could have gone either player's way. Round 3 starts today at 1 p.m. local time, 11:30 p.m. IST. Photo: Saint Louis Chess Club/Lennart Ootes

White wins two

Alexandra Kosteniuk could not get out of the gate against Harika Dronavalli | Photo: Saint Louis Chess Club/Lennart Ootes

Cairns Cup official logo | Photo: Official site

Harika - Kosteniuk: 1-0

GM Harika Dronavalli (2489) got a substantial advantage out of the opening against GM Alexandra Kosteniuk (SUI, 2501).

Position after 18...Qb5

19.Qxb5 axb5 20.Ne5 Bd6 21.Nxc6 and White used the extra pawn advantage to her favor.

GM Harika Dronavalli has made a great start | Photo: Saint Louis Chess Club/Lennart Ootes

Zhongyi - Irina: 0.5-0.5

GM Zhongyi Tan (CHN, 2540) and GM Irina Krush (USA, 2415) had a well contested draw.

GM Zhongyi Tan (CHN) - GM Irina Krush (USA): 0.5-0.5 | Photo: Saint Louis Chess Club/Lennart Ootes

GM Anna Muzychuk (UKR) - GM Mariya Muzychuk (UKR): 0.5-0.5 | Photo: Saint Louis Chess Club/Lennart Ootes

Nana - Anna Zatonskih: 1-0

GM Nana Dzagnidze (GEO, 2506) gained decisive advantage in the middlegame when the defending champion, IM Anna Zatonskih (USA, 2327) made a tactical error.

Position after 22...Bf8?

22...Bf8? allowed White to play the tactical shot 23.Bxe5 Qb6 24.Rxb5 Qxb5 25.Nh6+ gxh6 26.Bxf6 and White went on to win the game eventually.

GM Nana Dzagnidze (GEO) handed the defending champion IM Anna Zatonskih (USA) her second consecutive loss of the event| Photo: Saint Louis Chess Club/Lennart Ootes

Elisabeth - Alice: 0.5-0.5

IM Alice Lee (USA, 2368) held GM Elisabeth Paehtz (GER, 2457) to a draw. It could have gone either player's way.

GM Elisabeth Paehtz (GER) - IM Alice Lee (USA) | Photo: Saint Louis Chess Club/Lennart Ootes

Replay live stream

Replay Round 2 Live Commentary by GM Yasser Seirawan, and IMs Jovanka Houska, Nazi Paikidze and Begim Tokhirjonova | Video: Saint Louis Chess Club

Replay Round 2 games

Round 2 results

1GM Dzagnidze, Nana0.5GEO2506IM Zatonskih, Anna0.0USA23271-0
2GM Muzychuk, Anna0.5UKR2505GM Muzychuk, Mariya1.0UKR2510½-½
3GM Tan, Zhongyi1.0CHN2540GM Krush, Irina0.5USA2415½-½
4GM Paehtz, Elisabeth0.0GER2457IM Lee, Alice0.0USA2368½-½
5GM Dronavalli, Harika0.5IND2489GM Kosteniuk, Alexandra1.0SUI25011-0


Standings after Round 2


Round 3 pairings

1GM Kosteniuk, Alexandra1.0SUI2501GM Dzagnidze, Nana1.5GEO2506
2IM Lee, Alice0.5USA2368GM Dronavalli, Harika1.5IND2489
3GM Krush, Irina1.0USA2415GM Paehtz, Elisabeth0.5GER2457
4GM Muzychuk, Mariya1.5UKR2510GM Tan, Zhongyi1.5CHN2540
5IM Zatonskih, Anna0.0USA2327GM Muzychuk, Anna1.0UKR2505



Every day Round starts at 1 p.m. local time, 11:30 p.m. IST. Only rest day is on Tuesday 18th June 2024.

Thursday 6/13/24 13:00:00 Round 1
Friday 6/14/24 13:00:00 Round 2
Saturday 6/15/24 13:00:00 Round 3
Sunday 6/16/24 13:00:00 Round 4
Monday 6/17/24 13:00:00 Round 5
Tuesday 6/18/24 All Day Rest Day
Wednesday 6/19/24 13:00:00 Round 6
Thursday 6/20/24 13:00:00 Round 7
Friday 6/21/24 13:00:00 Round 8
Saturday 6/22/24 13:00:00 Round 9
Sunday 6/23/24 13:00:00 Playoff (if necessary)

Total prize fund

The total prize fund is US$ 200000.

Place Prize
1st $50,000
2nd $40,000
3rd $30,000
4th $20,000
5th $15,000
6th $11,000
7th $10,000
8th $9,000
9th $8,000
10th $7,000


It is a round-robin event with a Classical time control.


Official site

Tournament details

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