chessbase india logo

Vidit Gujrathi and Raunak Sadhwani finish 2nd in the Fall Chess Classic

by Himank Ghosh - 13/11/2022

A total of 3 Indian players participated in the Fall Chess Classic, a 10-player round robin event - Vidit Gujrathi, Surya Sekhar Ganguly and Raunak Sadhwani. GM Yu Yangyi scored 6.5/9 to win the A group, while Vidit scored 6/9 to bag the 2nd position in A group. With this win, Vidit has reinstated his India no. 2 position, taking his live rating to 2730. In the B group, it was GM Aleksandr Lenderman who clinched the 1st place, and Raunak Sadhwani came in 2nd. It was a tough tournament for Surya Ganguly - he was only able to score 1 win in group A, scoring 2.5/9. The event had a total prize fund of USD 36,000. Photo: Crystal Fuller/ Saint Louis Chess Club.

Yu Yangyi wins Fall Chess Classic Group A, Vidit finishes 2nd

Chinese Grandmaster Yu Yangyi had an excellent event, scoring an unbeaten 6.5/9 to win the Fall Chess Classic Group A. The only person who had a chance to catch up with him was Vidit, but Yu Yangyi scored an excellent win in the final round to seal his victory. Thanks to this excellent performance, Yu Yangyi is World no. 21 right now, with a live rating of 2728!

Yu Yangyi en route to defeat GM Grigoriy Oparin in the final round | Photo: Crystal Fuller/Saint Louis Chess Club

After a tough loss against Grandmaster Nijat Abasov in Round 6, Vidit made an excellent comeback in the remaining rounds. In Round 7, he drew against Niemann, and went on to defeat Oparin and Nzyhnyk in Round 8 and 9! Thanks to these wins, Vidit finished 2nd in the Group A of the Fall Chess Classic, scoring 6/9. A very solid performance gaining 6 Elo points, after Vidit gained 14 Elo points at the European Club Cup 2022, entering the World top 20 rankings and regaining his India no. 2 spot.

Vidit Gujrathi enters world top 20 once again, India no.2, Elo 2730, 2nd at Fall Classic 2022

Vidit Gujrathi in action against GM Ilya Nzyhnyk in the final round | Photo: Crystal Fuller/Saint Louis Chess Club

The Grandmaster from Nashik had a performance rating of 2778! | Photo: Official Website

Round 7: Grigoriy Oparin - Vidit Gujrathi : 1-0

In a very complex position where Black's pieces are swarming the Kingside, Oparin couldn't keep up the pressure and collapsed.

Position after 29. f4

White is already down a pawn, but 29. f4 just loses another pawn to 29...Nxg4. The best way for White to continue was Ng3 followed by Nh5, blocking the h-file and offering to trade the Queens with Qe3. But this is very hard to find in a practical game, considering that Vidit was already putting a lot of pressure to the White King. The major pieces were traded soon and Vidit comfortably converted the 2-pawns up endgame.

The India no.2 thinking through all the complications | Photo: Crystal Fuller/Saint Louis Chess Club

It was a tough tournament for the other Indian participant in Group A - Grandmaster Surya Sekhar Ganguly. After an amazing performance at the BCC Open 2022, Surya finished with only 2.5/9, scoring only 1 victory in Round 4.

After the final round of the Fall Chess Classic, Vidit Gujrathi and Surya Sekhar Ganguly joined Fabiano Caruana and Cristian Chirila in St. Louis, live on the C-squared Podcast! Check out their conversation on recent events, Fischer Random World Championship, Chesscom Global Championship, and much more:

C-Squared Podcast #10 | Global Chess Championship, Fischer Random & more with Vidit & Ganguly

GM Aleksandr Lenderman wins Group B, Raunak Sadhwani bags 2nd place

Grandmaster Aleksandr Lenderman won the Group B with a round to spare, scoring a dominating 6.5/9. His only loss of the tournament came to GM Cristian Chirila on the final round.

The final round clash between Lenderman and Chirila | Photo: Crystal Fuller/Saint Louis Chess Club

Raunak had an excellent start to the event - he started with 3 consecutive victories in the first 3 rounds. After drawing Round 4 and 5, he lost 2 games back-to-back. But the Nagpur whizkid is a fighter - he bounced back with a win in the final round against GM Akshat Chandra! Thanks to this win, Raunak finished in 2nd place with a score of 5.5/9.

Raunak Sadhwani deep in thought | Photo: Crystal Fuller/Saint Louis Chess Club

Raunak's performance in the Fall Chess Classic Group B | Photo: Official website

Round 9: Akshat Chandra - Raunak Sadhwani: 0-1

Akshat got a really great position out of the opening, and Raunak was under some serious pressure early in the game!

Position after 13...Qd7

...Qd7 was too slow - Akshat continued with 14. h4! followed by 15. Bg5, trading off the dark-squared bishop and removing the blockade in front of the protected and passed e5-pawn. White was doing really well and had a borderline winning position, but he went wrong soon.

Position after 20. Kg1

Kg1 was a mistake and lets Black back into the game with 20...h6!, preventing Ng5 in the future. The best way for White to continue was e6! Rd6 dxc5 bxc5 Ng5 Nd8 Nxe4! winning a pawn and having a completely winning position. After a few moves, it seemed like Black has solved all of his troubles - the minor pieces were exchanged, and the center passed pawn was not harmful anymore.

Position after 33. Rf3. White to play, can you find the winning move?

Black was already on the verge of being a little better, but Rf3 is just a tactical blunder. Akshat instantly resigned after 33...Qh6! as there is no way to prevent checkmate without giving up the Queen. Thus, Raunak won his last round game and bagged 2nd place in his group!

This was Raunak's first time playing in a closed classical Round-robin event like the Fall Classic - and he has proven his acumen! Photo: Crystal Fuller/ Saint Louis Chess Club

Photo Gallery

The champion of the B group, Grandmaster Aleksandr Lenderman sitting on the players' sofa before the round starts| Photo: Crystal Fuller/Saint Louis Chess Club

Vidit's meditation before the game starts, he wants to give his maximum concentration! | Photo: Crystal Fuller/Saint Louis Chess Club

The India no. 2's famous death stare | Photo: Crystal Fuller/Saint Louis Chess Club

Surya Ganguly is one of the nicest chess players in the world, here's him giving a nice picture before the round begins! | Photo: Crystal Fuller/Saint Louis Chess Club

Raunak Sadhwani takes a walk in the hall looking at the other games | Photo: Crystal Fuller/Saint Louis Chess Club

The duo doing live commentary from the Saint Louis Chess Club - FM Jonathan Schrantz and GM Evgenij Miroshnichenko | Photo: Austin Fuller/Saint Louis Chess Club

Replay Round 6-9 Group A games

Replay Round 6-9 Group B games

Group A final Standings 

Hans Niemann had a total of 8 draws and 1 win | Photo: Official Website

Group B final standings

A total of 4 players tied for the 3rd place with 5 points each| Photo: Official Website

2022 Fall Chess Classic: Round 9 | Video: Saint Louis Chess Club


Official website

Tournament regulations

Related news:
Fall Chess Classic R1-5: Vidit and Raunak in lead

@ 07/11/2022 by Himank Ghosh (en)
Fall Chess Classic 2022 Preview

@ 02/11/2022 by Himank Ghosh (en)