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Leon Luke Mendonca wins Gold and Silver for Varos Arad at Romanian Superliga Team 2022

by Shahid Ahmed - 11/10/2022

India's 67th GM Leon Luke Mendonca won an individual Gold on Board no.3. He also won a team Silver medal for ACS Sah Club Vados Arad at Superliga - Romanian Team Chess Championship 2022. Leon started the event with a loss. However, he bounced back by scoring 6.5 points in the next eight rounds. Starting out as the second-highest rated team, they managed to maintain their place. Leon was the top scorer of the team along with GM Thai Dai Van Nguyen (CZE) and FM Samuel-Timotei Ghimpu (ROU) who also scored the same 6.5/9. CSU ASE Superbet won both Open and Women's event with a score of 16/18 and 11/12 respectively. Photo: Leon's twitter

CSU ASE Superbet wins Gold in both Open and Women

Apart from Leon, the only other taking part in this event was India's 75th GM Pranav Venkatesh. He played for Clubul de Sah al Municipiului Baia Mare and scored 5/9. Leon's next event is World Junior 2022 which starts tomorrow in Sardinia, Italy.

Superliga Team Championship Runner-up - ACS Sah Club Vados Arad 15/18 | Photo: Leon's twitter

Superliga Team Championship Winners in Open and Women - CSU ASE Superbet | Photo: Romanian Chess Federation

Individual performances of ACS Sah Club Vados Arad

Leon - Stepanencu, Round 2

Position after 38...Ba6

GM Leon Luke Mendonca (2558) bounced back quite well in the second round against FM Nicodim-Cosmin Stepanescu (ROU, 2289). White is in complete control. Almost everything is winning for White. 39.g5 is quite possible right now. After 39...Bc8, 40.e6 is a beautiful tactical shot which works, irrespective of how Black reacts to it. However, in the game Leon opted for the safer 40.Qf3 as he lost the previous round and did not want to take any unnecessary risks as it was a team event.

Round 2: ACS Sah Club Vados Arad - Sah Club Oltenia Craiova: 5.5-0.5 | Photo: Romanian Chess Federation

GM Leon Luke Mendonca en route his victory against FM Nicodim-Cosmin Stepanencu (2289) | Photo: Romanian Chess Federation

Leon - Secheres, Round 7

Position after 34.h4

Leon is a versatile player. He can exploit positional advantage quite well too. White was positionally winning in under 20 moves after gaining the a7-pawn on 19th move. Sometimes you know that the position is completely winning for you and yet opponent can still put up a resistance for some time before everything crumbles. 34.h4 was the final blow to disintegrate FM Adrian-Simion Secheres' (ROU, 2375) position. 34...gxh4 35.Bxh4 Ng6 36.Bg3 Ne8 37.Nd5 Qd8 38.Kg2 Nf6 39.Ne3 Ne7 40.e5 and Black loses an important pawn on d6. White won the game in another six moves.

Before winning the individual Gold at World Youth Under-16 Olympiad, GM Pranav Venkatesh played for Clubul de Sah al Municipiului Baia Mare at Superliga - Romanian Team Championship 2022 | Photo: Romanian Chess Federation

GM Leon Luke Mendonca with his ACS Sah Club Vados Arad teammates at the closing ceremony | Photo: Romanian Chess Federation

The tournament hall at Oradea - Hotel Continental Forum in Oradea, Romania | Photo: Romanian Chess Federation
Closing Ceremony of Superliga Romanian National Team Chess Championships 2022 | Video: Romanian Chess Federation

GM Leon Luke Mendonca tweeted on his performance

He attended the Global Chess Festival on 8th October

A total of ten teams in Open and seven in Women took part in round-robin tournaments. Only six out of 6-9 members in the Open and four of 4-5 in the Women's event could play in each round. The tournaments took place at Oradea - Hotel Continental Forum in Oradea, Romania from 21st to 29th September 2022. The time control was 90 minutes/40 moves + 30 minutes + 30 seconds increment per move.

Replay all Open games

Replay all Women games

Final standings in Open

Rk.SNoTeamGames  +   =   -  TB1  TB2  TB3 
12CSU ASE Superbet980116037
28ACS Sah Club Vados Arad971115034,5
36CS Politehnica Iasi-CSM Iasi 2020960312034
45ACS Smart Galati943211031
510CS Victoria-Sparta Techirghiol94149027
63CS Studentesc Medicina Timisoara92438227
79CS Universitatea de Vest Timisoara94058025
87Clubul de Sah al Municipiului Baia Mare92347025 Sah Club Oltenia Craiova91264020,5
101CSU Targoviste9009009


Final standings in Women

Rk.SNoTeamGames  +   =   -  TB1  TB2  TB3 
13CSU ASE Superbet651011017,5
25ACS Arnia IT63218214
32CSM Iasi 202063218014,5
41CS Studentesc Medicina Timisoara62226012,5
54CSM Bucuresti62135011,5
67CSU UVT Timisoara6123408
76CSM Sighetu Marmatiei6006006



Romanian Chess Federation: Official site, twitter and youtube

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