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Aravindh Chithambaram becomes the MPL National Rapid Champion 2022

by Sagar Shah - 30/04/2022

GM Aravindh Chithambaram (TN, 2572) successfully retained his National Rapid title. This is his second National Rapid triumph after 2019. He has only played three of them. So two triumphs out of three is certainly a fantastic endeavor for Aravindh. He has also qualified for the World Rapid 2022 which will take place later this year. Aravindh scored an unbeaten 8.0/9 and finished a half point ahead of the competition. GM Deepan Chakkravarthy (RSPB, 2474) and IM Raahul V S (TN, 2177) scored 7.5/9 each. They were placed second and third according to the tie-breaks. Total prize fund of the tournament was ₹400000, top three prizes were ₹75000, ₹60000 and ₹50000 each respectively. Photo: Aditya Sur Roy

RSPB claims six out of top 10

The last time we had the national rapid championship over the board was in 2019 and the next time was in 2022. The event didn't happen for two years in between because of the pandemic. But things did not change much as far as the winner of the event was concerned. Aravindh Chithambaram managed to win it in 2019 and he managed to win it once again in 2022. "I have taken part in National Rapid thrice in my career and have won two times till date", says Aravindh. The 22-year-old soft spoken GM from Chennai raced to a 7.0/7 start and then drew his remaining two games to emerge as the champion with half a point margin.

GM Aravindh Chithambaram retains his National Rapid title successfully | Photo: Aditya Sur Roy
"I don't know anything other than chess" - National Rapid 2022 champion Aravindh Chithambaram | Video: ChessBase India

Ankit - Aravindh, Round 5

Position after 43...Rc3

Instead of taking a draw by repeating Qh3-Qg3+, Aravindh went all-in with 43...Rc3. Since both players were in time trouble, it paid off immediately as White blundered 44.Rd2 and it was all over after 44...Nf3.

Aravindh - Vishnu, Round 6

Final position after 23.Be4

Aravindh scored a clinical victory over GM Vishnu Prasanna in just 23 moves.

Aravindh scored an unbeaten 8.0/9, finished a half point ahead of the field and gained 11 Elo rating points
"Pandemic worked well for the youngsters" - GM Deepan Chakkravarthy 2nd at National Rapid 2022 | Video: ChessBase India

GM Deepan Chakkravarthy scored an unbeaten 7.5/9, including a draw with the eventual winner GM Aravindh Chithambaram
Asian Junior 2021 champion IM Raahul V S beats 3 GMs to finish 3rd at National Rapid 2022 | Video: ChessBase India

IM Raahul V S made a good a recovery after a third round loss against GM Sriram Jha, to finish third 7.5/9

Photo Gallery:

The Nashik station is bustling with energy, but at the same time feels quite calm

From the station, the venue of the tournament - MEETRA (Maharashtra Environmental Engineering and Research Academy) is just 10 minutes walk

I travelled together with Amruta and Asim Khan (the man behind the reels on ChessBase India)

The entrance of MEETRA

The campus is green, quiet and beautiful. A perfect place to play chess!

One of the main buildings of the campus is adorned with pictures of three great chess players of Maharashtra - GM Pravin Thipsay, GM Abhijit Kunte and GM Vidit Gujrathi

Some sumptuous Maharashtrian food greets us! Don't miss the mango pickle!

Aravindh Chithambaram (gold) with his good friend Raahul VS (bronze) at the National Rapid 2022

Three super strong GMs of India - GM Gopal G N, GM Neelotpal Das and GM Laxman R R


Finally met GM Vishnu Prasanna after many years! One of the benefits of visiting the tournament is that you get a chance to catch up with your friends!

A total of 179 players including 14 GMs, 10 IMs, a WGM and a WIM took part in this three-day nine-round Swiss League Rapid Rating tournament. It was organized by Nashik District Chess Association from 27th to 29th April 2022 at Maharashtra Environmental Engineering Training and Research Academy (MEETRA), Nashik, Maharashtra.

Replay Aravindh's games

Replay all games

Final Standings in Rapid

Rk.SNoNameFEDRtgClub/CityPts. TB1  TB2  TB3 
11GMAravindh Chithambaram Vr.IND2572Tamil Nadu8,049,554,046,75
24GMDeepan Chakkravarthy J.IND2474RSPB7,550,054,043,50
332IMRaahul V SIND2177Tamil Nadu7,542,545,535,75
419IMGusain HimalIND2319RSPB7,052,056,041,50
531IMSidhant MohapatraIND2183RSPB7,049,053,040,25
622GMMitrabha GuhaIND2265West Bengal7,048,053,038,50
730GMKarthik VenkataramanIND2192Andhra Pradesh7,047,552,039,75
89IMKrishna C R GIND2378RSPB7,044,548,035,25
921IMRatnakaran K.IND2298RSPB7,043,547,036,00
1016GMNeelotpal DasIND2338PSPB7,042,546,533,50
116GMKarthikeyan MuraliIND2419PSPB6,548,552,035,00
1220IMMehar Chinna Reddy C.H.IND2305RSPB6,547,552,035,75
1317GMArjun KalyanIND2334Tamil Nadu6,547,551,536,25
1436IMSammed Jaykumar SheteIND2086Maharashtra6,547,050,533,25
157GMSriram JhaIND2384LIC6,546,051,037,00
1659Vaibhav Jayant RautIND1734Maharashtra6,546,048,533,00
1723IMDhulipalla Bala Chandra PrasadIND2265Andhra Pradesh6,545,550,536,00
1842FMWagh SuyogIND1942Maharashtra6,545,548,532,50
193GMVishnu Prasanna. VIND2521Tamil Nadu6,053,058,035,75
2037FMAradhya GargIND2074Delhi6,049,052,032,75
2141FMAyush SharmaIND1943Madhya Pradesh6,049,052,032,50
2246FMJeet JainIND1895Gujarat6,049,052,032,25
2311GMSankalp GuptaIND2362Maharashtra6,047,552,031,00
245GMGhosh DiptayanIND2466West Bengal6,046,550,530,75
40IMNeelash SahaIND1959West Bengal6,046,550,530,75


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