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Girish Koushik Glorious in M D Bhagwat Memorial Chess960 Online Blitz Open

by Shahid Ahmed - 24/07/2020

Buddhibal Kreeda Trust organized their third online event in four months, their second Chess960 event during this pandemic period. GM Girish A Koushik performed brilliantly as he scored an unbeaten 8.5/9 to win the championship. This was his first ever ChessBase India Online Blitz event triumph. World no.1 in Under-16 GM Nodirbek Abdusattorov scored 7.5/9 and finished sole second. Five players finished at 7.0/9. GM Raunak Sadhwani continued his fantastic form and finished third with a score of 7.0/9. The event witnessed a total of 123 players including 25 GMs, 29 IMs and 5 WIMs participate from ten countries across the world including India. Photo: Niklesh Jain

Girish Koushik becomes unbeaten champion

India's 63rd and Karnataka's third GM Girish A Koushik wins his maiden ChessBase India Online Blitz event as he scored an unbeaten 8.5/9, finished a full point ahead of the competition to clinch the championship. He won ₹12000 cash for his efforts. Newly crowned Asian Junior Online champion and World no.1 in Under-16 GM Nodirbek Abdusattorov of Uzbekistan scored 7.5/9 and secured second position. Five players finished at 7.0/9, they are - GM Raunak Sadhwani, GM Jakhongir Vakhidov, IM Mohammad Nubairshah Shaikh, IM Aditya Mittal and GM D Gukesh. Raunak continued his fantastic form as he scored 7.0/9 and finished third according to the tie-break score.

Buddhibal Kreeda Trust organized this event in memory of Late M D Bhagwat | Photo: Maharashtra Chess League

Total 123 players including 25 GMs, 29 IMs and 5 WIMs from India, Azerbaijan, Bangladesh, Chile, China, Iran, Peru, Russia, USA and Uzbekistan took part in this 9-Round Chess960 tournament. For the first time in a ChessBase India Online Blitz event, a GM and a WIM participated from both China and Iran each respectively.

Champion - GM Girish A Koushik 8.5/9 | Photo: Niklesh Jain

An Endgame Magic

Gak_chess (GM Girish A Koushik) scored a brilliant win over Js3131 (GM Jose Martinez Eduardo) in Round 7 with a fantastic play in the endgame using his minor pieces.

Gak_chess - Js3131, Round 7

Position after 24...Nxf8

Find out the best plan for white to trap the b4-knight after 24...Nxf8. Of course it wasn't easy to find it during time scramble.

Position after 48.Kc2

Find out black's best defence after 48.Kc2

Replay all games of Girish A Koushik

Runner-up - GM Nodirbek Abdusattorov 7.5/9

A prolonged Queen-Knight endgame

Keramin's (GM Nodirbek Abdusattorov) best win of the tournament was perhaps against Pabh (GM Abhimanyu Puranik). The game witnessed over 51+ move long Queen-Knight endgame which Pabh could have drawn in the end but he blundered in time trouble.

Keramin - Pabh, Round 5

Position after 83.Ke1

The game continued with 83...Qxg2 which cost black the knight after 84.Qe5+. Find out what black should have played instead.

GM Abhimanyu Puranik scored 6.0/10 and finished 22nd

The Great Escape

CM Shahil Dey got a decisive advantage against Keramin (GM Nodirbek Abdusattorov) in the first round but he was unable to capitalize it.

Shahildey - Keramin, Round 1

Position after 22...Bf3

The game continued with 23.Qxf6 but 23.Re1 Ne4 24.Bc3 would have been absolutely fine for white.

CM Shahil Dey definitely has the ability to beat anyone

Replay all games of Nodirbek Abdusattorov

Second Runner-up - GM Raunak Sadhwani 7.0/9 | Photo: Niki Riga

A Model Game

Devil1234 (GM Raunak Sadhwani) continued his fantastic form as he beat Uzbektiger95 (GM Jakhongir Vakhidov) in Round 5 with a brilliant display of attack.

Devil1234 - Uzbektiger95, Round 5

Position after 19.Nf5

The position reeks of complete dominance of white pieces attack on the kingside after 19.Nf5

Replay all games of Raunak Sadhwani

India no.2 Vidit Gujrathi played and streamed his games

Star attraction of the event was the participation of India no.2 Vidit Gujrathi. However he did not have a good tournament as he scored 6.0/9 and finished 20th. Streaming and playing simultaneously that also a Chess960 Blitz event is certainly a difficult task. The first loss he incurred was in Round 2 against Mikhail Kobalia, in Round 5 he lost against the reigning 1st SAARC champion CREATOR1198 (IM Mohammad Nubairshah Shaikh) and in the final round he blundered a rook against talented youngster IM Aditya Mittal.

CREATOR1198 - EvilGenius, Round 5

Position after 26...Kh7

Find out the best continuation for white after 26...Kh7

5th - Mohammad Nubairshah Shaikh 7.0/9
Replay the entire live stream by Vidit Gujrathi | Video: Vidit Gujrathi

Best Woman 1st - WIM Vantika Agrawal 5.0/9

Shadow_master (WIM Vantika Agrawal) held Phoenix92 (GM Adhiban Baskaran) to a draw in Round 9

Final Standings

Main Prize winners (Top 20)

Rank Name Score Prize money
1 GM Girish A Koushik 8.5 ₹12000
2 GM Nodirbek Abdusattorov 7.5 ₹8000
3 GM Raunak Sadhwani 7 ₹5000
4 GM Jakhongir Vakhidov 7 ₹3000
5 IM Mohammad Nubairshah Shaikh 7 ₹2000
6 IM Aditya Mittal 7 ₹1500
7 GM D Gukesh 7 ₹1000
8 GM Jose Eduardo Martinez Alcantara 6.5 ₹1000
9 IM Terry Renato 6.5 ₹800
10 GM Deep Sengupta 6.5 ₹700
11 GM Aravindh Chithambaram 6.5 ₹600
12 GM Deepan Chakravarthy 6.5 ₹600
13 IM Aronyak Ghosh 6.5 ₹600
14 IM Mitrabha Guha 6 ₹600
15 GM Visakh N R 6 ₹600
16 GM Shardul Gagare 6 ₹600
17 IM Raja Rithvik R 6 ₹600
18 IM Sayantan Das 6 ₹600
19 GM Vishnu Prasanna 6 ₹600
20 GM Vidit Gujrathi 6 ₹600

Best Women

1 WIM Vantika Agrawal 5 ₹600
2 IM Nisha Mohota 5 ₹500
3 WFM Savitha Shri B 5 ₹400

Rating Category 1601-1800

1 Jaiveer Mahendru (1695) 4.5 ₹600
2 Chetan Sharma (1761) 4.5 ₹500
3 Prakhar Bajaj (1663) 4 ₹400

Rating Category 1401-1600

1 Negi Augustiya (1555) 2.5 ₹600
2 Cera Dagaria (1597) 2.5 ₹500
3 Rakesh Kulkarni (1409) 2 ₹400

Rating Category 1201-1400

1 Abhiraj Singh Tawar (1339) 4 ₹600
2 Padmaesh M K (1293) 3 ₹500
3 Sujit Varghese (1227) 3 ₹400

Rating Category 1000-1200

1 Adharsh (1179) 4 ₹600
2 Archit Saigal (1093) 3 ₹500
3 Harsh Pandit (1171) 3 ₹400

Best Unrated

1 Arjun C 4 ₹600
2 P Benny Joseph 3.5 ₹500
3 Ishwar Lal Patel 3.5 ₹400

Feedback of the participants

Mayur Gondhalekar, ChessBase India regular currently residing in Japan

This was a great, fun tournament. with more than 80 titled players, it was going to be challenging, but being chess960 gave all players a chance if we took care to minimize the blunders. Round 1 was memorable as I overcame a titled player, but what I learnt is that one cannot let their guard down, especially in 960, as tricks, traps and blunders are found around every corner! I look forward to more of 960 tournaments in the future.


Prasanth K Pabha

Thanks for the opportunity

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Download the games in PGN

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