chessbase india logo

Grand Swiss R3: Harika squeezes water from stone

by Shahid Ahmed - 30/10/2021

Harika grinded an equal endgame against Stefanova until the latter made a grave mistake which cost her the game in the third round of FIDE Women's Grand Swiss 2021. She is now one of the leader among nine players at 2.5/3. Padmini and Vantika beat compatriots, Vaishali and Divya respectively to move to 2.0/3. Nihal Sarin scored an academic victory against Temur Kuybokarov (AUS). He is among the six players who are just a half point behind the sole leader of the tournament, Alireza Firouzja 3.0/3. Nihal will face Pavel Ponkratov in Round 4 which starts today at 4:30 p.m. IST. Photo: Mark Livshitz/FIDE

Firouzja takes sole lead, Nihal moves to 2.5/3

Sasikiran, Gukesh, Praggnanandhaa, Arjun and Raunak drew with Parham, Artemiev, Howell, Mamedov and Jorden van Foreest; Harikrishna defeated Morovic. Sethuraman, Ganguly and Adhiban lost to Navara, Swiercz and Onyshcuk respectively.

Harika persevered an endgame grind | Photo: Mark Livshitz/FIDE

FIDE Grand Swiss 2021 official logo | Photo: FIDE

Sasikiran - Parham: 0.5-0.5

Sasikiran was better than his opponent Parham Maghsoodloo (IRI) moments before they repeated moves to draw the game.

Position after 29...Qe4

White has advantage for many reasons - space, better coordinated and placed pieces and the passed e-pawn can cause trouble for Black. 30.Ra7 would pose serious threat for Black. Both 30...Bg5 and 30...Rf7 runs into trouble. For e.g. 30...Bg5 31.Nxg5 hxg5 32.h6 and now Black does not have any good reply, whether Black plays g4, g6 or Qxe2, all of them work in White's favor. 30...Rf7 is met wth 31.Qd1 Be6 32.Ra6 and White's plan remains the same.

Krishnan Sasikiran 2.0/3 | Photo: Niklesh Jain

Gukesh - Artemiev: 0.5-0.5

Vladislav Artemiev is one of the strongest Russian in the world. He is a former world no.10 and a European champion. We have witnessed Artemiev do consistently well whenever he got an opportunity at the Meltwater Champions Chess Tour this past summer. To make a quiet draw with him, Gukesh made it look easy, when it actually is not.

Two years later Gukesh draws with Artemiev in the same tournament with the exact same number of moves | Photo: Amruta Mokal

Praggnanandhaa - Howell: 0.5-0.5

Praggnanandhaa drew with the marathon man, David Howell in a hard-fought game. If you are wondering, why marathon man, it is because the English GM has played 30 games which lasted over 100 moves since 2003.

Position after 27...Qxd1+

White decided to give up two rooks for a queen. Thus, the sequence 27.Qc4 Qxd1+ 28.Rxd1 Rxd1+ 29.Kh2 Ne4 30.Qb4 happened. The reason why White opted for this is probably to keep the position imbalanced. Generally, two rooks are stronger than a queen. However, the combination of queen and knight is stronger than rook and knight. Moreover, Black cannot get anything out of the position immediately. Both players were eventually forced to repeat moves.

Praggnanandhaa 2.0/3 | Photo: Anna Shtourman/FIDE

Kuybokarov - Nihal: 0-1

Australia no.3 GM Temur Koybokarov dropped a pawn for no reason against Nihal Sarin.

Position after 24.Rc3

24.Rc3 allows Black to take on d4 without any repercussion. Instead, 24.Bb5 would have prevented the d4-pawn from being captured. The game continued 24...Nxd4 25.Ne5 Nd5 26.Rcc1 Re7 27.Bf1 Bxh3 White loses another pawn and the position is crumbling.

Nihal Sarin closing in on India no.4, moves to Elo 2659.5 with 2.5/3 at Grand Swiss 2021 | Video: ChessBase India

Nihal Sarin 2.5/3 | Photo: Amruta Mokal

Arjun Erigaisi - Rauf Mamedov (AZE): 0.5-0.5 | Photo: Rupali Mullick

Harikrishna - Morovic Fernandez (CHI): 1-0 | Photo: Amruta Mokal

Raunak - Jorden: 0.5-0.5

Raunak Sadhwani had a grueling battle against Tata Steel 2021 winner, Jorden van Foreest. Raunak seemed to have a significant edge in the final moments of the game.

Position after 39...Rf8

According to the computer, 40.d5 puts White in a good position to push for a win. 40...exd5 41.Nd7 Rf7 42.Qxd5 Qe3 43.Rxf5 Rxf5 44.Qxf5+ Kg8 45.Qf8+ Kh7 46.Qf7 and White has managed to prevent all perpetual. This is not easy to find especially if you are in time trouble and playing for hours.

Jorden almost got into deep trouble against Raunak | Photo: Anna Shtourman/FIDE

Harika - Stefanova: 1-0

Harika and Stefanova have been battling each other for a long time. Stefanova won their last encounter in March 2020 at Lausanne GP. It was time for payback.

Position after 38...f5

Harika grinded the endgame and Stefanova eventually broke by giving up the wrong pawn 38...f5. Instead, Black needed to give up the c-pawn 38...c5 and not disturb the kingside pawn structure to keep her chances for a draw.

Padmini - Vaishali: 1-0

IM Padmini Rout got a better position after her opponent IM Vaishali opted for an incorrect exchange of knights.

Position after 11.Ne5

Black is not forced to take on e5. Anything but taking on e5 is a better choice for Black as 11...Nxe5 costs Black a pawn 12.dxe5 Nd7 13.cxd5 Nxe5 14.dxe6 Bxe6 15.Bxb7. Black could not recover the loss of a pawn and White's light squared bishop became menacing.

Padmini scored her second consecutive victory | Photo: Rupali Mullick

Vantika - Divya: 1-0

WGM Vantika Agrawal outplayed WGM Divya Deshmukh after the latter lost a lot of valuable tempi.

Position after 23...Nc7

Black lost a lot of tempi by maneuvering the knight to c7. It did not help Black in any way. 24.dxc5 Nd5 25.Rac1 Ne5 26.Bxd5 exd5 27.Bc3 and things completely turned into White's favor.

Vantika made a good start 2.0/3 | Photo: Anna Shtourman/FIDE


A few interesting finishes from Round 3

Alireza Firouzja (FRA) defeated Alexandr Predke (RUS)

Vasif Durarbayli (AZE) lost to Daniil Dubov (RUS)

Kirill Alekseenko (RUS) drew with Sergei Movsesian (ARM)

David Anton Guijarro (ESP) defeated Javokhir Sindarov (UZB)

GM Nana Dzagnidze (GEO) drew with WGM Natalija Pogonina (RUS)
FIDE Grand Swiss Round 3 recap | Video: ChessBase India

Photo Gallery

Firouzja has taken sole lead 3.0/3 | Photo: Mark Livshitz/FIDE

FIDE MD and Deputy Chairman, WGM Dana Reizniece-Ozola makes the first move on Women's board no.1 | Photo: Mark Livshitz/FIDE

The tournament hall | Photo: Mark Livshitz/FIDE


Everyday game starts at 2 p.m. local time (4:30 p.m. IST) between 27th October and 7th November 2021. Rest day is on Tuesday 2nd November 2021.

Time Control

The time control for each game is: 100 minutes for the first 40 moves, followed by 50 minutes for the next 20 moves, followed by 15 minutes for the rest of the game with an increment of 30 seconds per move starting from move 1.


The top two players in the open event will qualify for the FIDE Candidates 2022. The next six players will earn their spots in the FIDE Grand Prix. The Women's Grand Swiss winner will qualify to the Women's Candidates. The following four best players will qualify for the FIDE Women's Grand Prix.


The total prize fund in the Open is US$ 425,000 with the first prize being $70,000. For Women's the total prize fund is $125,000, first prize $20,000. Total numbers of prizes are 60, Open - 40 and Women - 20.

Replay Round 3 Open games

Replay Round 3 Women games

Replay the live stream

FIDE Grand Swiss Round 3 | Live commentary by IM Sagar Shah | Video: ChessBase India

Round 3 results

Rd.Bo.No. NameFEDRtgPts.ResultPts.NameFEDRtg No.
GMSasikiran KrishnanIND2640½ - ½GMMaghsoodloo ParhamIRI2701
GMGukesh DIND2640½ - ½GMArtemiev VladislavRUS2699
GMPraggnanandhaa RIND2618½ - ½GMHowell David W LENG2658
GMKuybokarov TemurAUS25490 - 1GMNihal SarinIND2652
GMNavara DavidCZE269111 - 01GMSethuraman S.P.IND2620
GMErigaisi ArjunIND26341½ - ½1GMMamedov RaufAZE2673
GMGanguly Surya ShekharIND261710 - 11GMSwiercz DariuszUSA2647
GMHarikrishna PentalaIND2719½1 - 01GMMorovic Fernandez IvanCHI2510
GMSadhwani RaunakIND2609½½ - ½½GMVan Foreest JordenNED2691
GMAdhiban B.IND2672½0 - 1½GMOnyshchuk VolodymyrUKR2622
GMHarika DronavalliIND25111 - 0GMStefanova AntoanetaBUL2475
IMPadmini RoutIND238011 - 01WGMVaishali RIND2419
WIMVantika AgrawalIND232211 - 0½WIMDivya DeshmukhIND2305


Round 4 pairings

Rd.Bo.No. NameFEDRtgPts.ResultPts.NameFEDRtg No.
GMNihal SarinIND2652GMPonkratov PavelRUS2659
GMFedoseev VladimirRUS270422GMGukesh DIND2640
GMArtemiev VladislavRUS269922GMSasikiran KrishnanIND2640
GMSevian SamuelUSA265422GMPraggnanandhaa RIND2618
GMMovsesian SergeiARM2627GMHarikrishna PentalaIND2719
GMSjugirov SananRUS2663GMErigaisi ArjunIND2634
GMVan Foreest JordenNED269111GMGanguly Surya ShekharIND2617
GMMatlakov MaximRUS268211GMSadhwani RaunakIND2609
GMSethuraman S.P.IND262011GMGelfand BorisISR2680
GMBjerre Jonas BuhlDEN25691½GMAdhiban B.IND2672
WGMZhu JinerCHN2455GMHarika DronavalliIND2511
IMPadmini RoutIND238022IMKashlinskaya AlinaRUS2493
WGMSargsyan Anna M.ARM240222WIMVantika AgrawalIND2322
WGMVaishali RIND241911WIMKamalidenova MeruertKAZ2339
WIMDivya DeshmukhIND2305½½IMMilliet SophieFRA2410



Official site

Chess-results: Open and Women

Tournament Regulations: Open and Women

Contact Us