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MPL National Junior 2022 R5-6: Priyanka Nutakki and Bhagyashree Patil share the lead

by Shahid Ahmed - 12/03/2022

Utsab Chatterjee (WB), IM Neelash Saha (WB), IM Koustav Chatterjee (WB) and FM Ayush Sharma (MP) are the four leaders at MPL 50th National Junior Chess Championship 2022 Open. The sole leader after the fifth round, Utsab drew his sixth round game against IM Harshavardhan G B (TN). It allowed Koustav, Neelash and Ayush to catch up by winning their respective games. In the Girls event, top seed WGM Priyanka Nutakki (AP) beat WFM Lakshmi C (TN) in an exciting encounter in the sixth round to ascend to the top. She is now joined by WFM Bhagyashree Patil (MAH) in the lead. They will face each other in Round 7 which starts today at 9:00 a.m. IST today. Photo: IA Jitendra Choudhary

Utsab, Neelash, Koustav and Ayush in a four-way lead

In the Open event, six players are trailing the leaders by a half point at 5.0/6 each. They are - GM Iniyan P (TN), IM Raahul V S (TN), IM Pranesh M (TN), IM Harshavardhan G B (TN), FM Rohith Krishna S (TN) and CM Soham Kamotra (J&K). Six girls are at a half point behind 5.0/6 each in the Girls event. They are - WFM Lakshmi C (TN), Divyabharathi Masanam (TN), WCM Bristy Mukherjee (WB), Samriddhaa Ghosh (WB), Rindhiya V (TN) and Femil Chelladurai (TN).

WGM Priyanka Nutakki is in the lead along with WFM Bhagyashree Patil | Photo: Aditya Sur Roy

Open Round 5: Utsab - Pranesh: 1-0

Utsab Chatterjee (WB) got a better position out of the opening against IM Pranesh M (TN).

Position after 13...Qg6

It is evident that White was still in his preparation 12.Rg1 h5 13.h3 and here Black should have unpinned the knight Rae8. Instead, he opted for the dubious 13...Qg6 which clearly increases the queen's vulnerability.

Position after 17.Ke2

To beat the new National Sub-Junior champion, you have to bring something new to the table. 17.Ke2 is an excellent move which has the idea of connecting the rooks and shifting all his major pieces on the kingside. Black's position became extremely uncomfortable and it was just a matter of time before everything fell apart.

Utsab gained sole lead by defeating IM Pranesh M | Photo: IA Jitendra Choudhary

FM Ayush Sharma (MP) - Hari Madhavan N B (TN): 0.5-0.5 | Photo: IA Jitendra Choudhary

IM Koustav Chatterjee (WB) - FM Rohith Krishna S (TN): 1-0 | Photo: IA Jitendra Choudhary

FM Mohamed Anees M (TN) - GM Iniyan P (TN): 0.5-0.5 | Photo: IA Jitendra Choudhary

Round 6: Aaryan - Neelash: 0-1

Rook and Knight or Bishop vs Rook is quite a common endgame especially in the shorter time controls. If you add another pair of minor pieces, the position becomes that much more complex.

Position after 55...Nxd5

IM Neelash Saha (WB) had 50 moves to win this but he just took 26 to trap his opponent FM Aaryan Varshney's (DEL) rook.

IM Neelash Saha (WB) is the one the leaders 5.5/6 | Photo: Aditya Sur Roy

IM Harshavardhan G B (TN) - Utsab Chatterjee (WB): 0.5-0.5 | Photo: IA Jitendra Choudhary

Soham - Ayush: 0-1

Arguably, the most exciting game of the day was between Soham Bhattacharyya (WB) and Ayush Sharma (MP). Despite the former having a decisive advantage for the better part of the game, Ayush managed to endure a difficult position and eventually turn things around in his favor.

Position after 25...Qe5

One of the best chances White had in the game was in the above position after 25...Qe5. 26.fxg6 is the winning continuation for White. Try to calculate all variations.

FM Ayush Sharma (MP) is one of the leaders 5.5/6 | Photo: Aditya Sur Roy

GM Iniyan P (TN) - Jinan Jomon (KER): 1-0 | Photo: IA Jitendra Choudhary

Garv Rai (DEL) defended well in the queen ending against GM Arjun Kalyan (TN) | Photo: IA Jitendra Choudhary

Girls Round 5: Lakshmi - Poorna: 1-0

WFM Lakshmi C (TN) beat Poorna Sri M K (TN) to gain sole lead after the latter went wrong in the opening and blundered a piece.

Position after 11...Nh5

11...Nh5? is not a good discover attack. 12.Nd5 Qd6 13.Nf3 e6 14.e5 Bxe5?? and Black sealed her fate. 15.Qxe5 Qxe5 16.Ne7+ White gained material and Black has no compensation for it.

WFM Lakshmi C (TN) beat Poorna Sri M K (TN) to take sole lead 5.0/5 | Photo: IA Jitendra Choudhary

WCM Arushi Kotwal (J&K) - WFM Bhagyashree Patil (MAH): 0-1 | Photo: IA Jitendra Choudhary

Round 6: Priyanka - Lakshmi: 1-0

WGM Priyanka Nutakki (AP) had a roller coaster game against WFM Lakshmi C (TN). At one point, the top seed was in grave danger.

Position after 26.Be2

26.Be2 might seem to be unassuming but it actually could have landed White in deep trouble. 26.gxf6 Qxf6 27.Nxe4 Qxf3 28.Qxf3 Rxf3 29.Nxd6 is relatively better, although it still looks worse. Find out what was the winning continuation for Black which she missed after 26.Be2. It was certainly messy and not easy to calculate all the lines or come to a proper evaluation of the resultant position.

WGM Priyanka Nutakki (AP) won an exciting game against WFM Lakshmi C (TN) | Photo: IA Jitendra Choudhary

WFM Bhagyashree Patil (MAH) capitalized on her opponent WFM Tanishka Kotia's (HAR) blunder in a drawn rook endgame | Photo: IA Jitendra Choudhary

WIM Mounika Akshaya's (AP) momentary blindspot in the endgame cost her a piece and the game against Divyabharathi Masanam (TN) | Photo: IA Jitendra Choudhary

For more Round 5 and 6 photos, please click at the respective links.


A total of 186 players including 2 GMs, 6 IMs in the Open and 105 players including a WGM and a WIM in the Girls tournament are taking part. It is organized by Haryana Chess Association. Both tournaments are taking place at RPS International School, Gurgaon, Haryana from 9th to 13th March 2022. The nine-round Swiss league tournament has a time control of 90 minutes + 30 seconds increment from move no.1

Replay Open Round 5-6 games

Replay Girls Round 5-6 games

Open Round 6 results

17IMHarshavardhan G B2402Tamil Nadu½ - ½5Utsab Chatterjee2324West Bengal10
29Hari Madhavan N B2380Tamil Nadu0 - 1IMKoustav Chatterjee2466West Bengal4
313FMAaryan Varshney2277Delhi0 - 1IMNeelash Saha2445West Bengal6
429Bhattacharyya Soham2004West Bengal0 - 1FMAyush Sharma2302Madhya Pradesh12
51GMIniyan P2516Tamil Nadu41 - 04Jinan Jomon2069Kerala27
641Garv Rai1869Delhi4½ - ½4GMArjun Kalyan2506Tamil Nadu2
73IMRaahul V S2478Tamil Nadu41 - 04FMMohamed Anees M2226Tamil Nadu19
85IMPranesh M2455Tamil Nadu41 - 04Anup Shankar R1842Tamil Nadu45
911FMRohith Krishna S2304Tamil Nadu41 - 04Nirnay Garg1618Haryana74
1017IMManish Anto Cristiano F2236Tamil Nadu4½ - ½4Md Bashiq Imrose1671Telangana68


Round 7 pairings

14IMKoustav Chatterjee2466West BengalUtsab Chatterjee2324West Bengal10
26IMNeelash Saha2445West BengalFMAyush Sharma2302Madhya Pradesh12
37IMHarshavardhan G B2402Tamil Nadu55GMIniyan P2516Tamil Nadu1
418CMSoham Kamotra2229Jammu And Kashmir55IMRaahul V S2478Tamil Nadu3
511FMRohith Krishna S2304Tamil Nadu55IMPranesh M2455Tamil Nadu5
62GMArjun Kalyan2506Tamil NaduDhanush Ragav N S1910Tamil Nadu37
734Pattnayak Nilsu1976OdishaHari Madhavan N B2380Tamil Nadu9
842Rakshith Srinivasan1856KarnatakaFMAaryan Varshney2277Delhi13
954Krishnan Ritvik1761MaharashtraIMManish Anto Cristiano F2236Tamil Nadu17
1020AGMVignesh B2206Tamil NaduGarv Rai1869Delhi41


Girls Round 6 results

11WIMPriyanka Nutakki2301Andhra Pradesh1 - 05WFMLakshmi C1968Tamil Nadu4
23WFMBhagyashree Patil1974Maharashtra1 - 0WFMTanishka Kotia1849Haryana12
32WFMBommini Mounika Akshaya2145Andhra Pradesh40 - 14Divyabharathi Masanam1711Tamil Nadu21
416Abhirami Madabushi1777Telangana40 - 14Rindhiya V1949Tamil Nadu5
58Ghosh Samriddhaa1877West Bengal41 - 04Poorna Sri M.K1763Tamil Nadu17
624Femil Chelladurai1596Tamil Nadu41 - 04Velpula Sarayu1875Telangana9
731Sajitha B1455Tamil Nadu40 - 14WCMBristy Mukherjee1788West Bengal15
86Srimathi R1944Delhi½ - ½Sachi Jain1401Delhi37
932Navya Tayal1451Haryana½ - ½Meenal Gupta1941Jammu And Kashmir7
1042Charvi Patidar1367Rajasthan½ - ½WCMArushi Kotwal1854Jammu And Kashmir11


Round 7 pairings

13WFMBhagyashree Patil1974MaharashtraWIMPriyanka Nutakki2301Andhra Pradesh1
221Divyabharathi Masanam1711Tamil Nadu55WFMLakshmi C1968Tamil Nadu4
35Rindhiya V1949Tamil Nadu55Femil Chelladurai1596Tamil Nadu24
415WCMBristy Mukherjee1788West Bengal55Ghosh Samriddhaa1877West Bengal8
512WFMTanishka Kotia1849Haryana4WFMBommini Mounika Akshaya2145Andhra Pradesh2
627Marium Fatima1511Bihar4Abhirami Madabushi1777Telangana16
728Varshita Jain1491Madhya Pradesh44Srimathi R1944Delhi6
87Meenal Gupta1941Jammu And Kashmir44Sajitha B1455Tamil Nadu31
99Velpula Sarayu1875Telangana44Navya Tayal1451Haryana32
1037Sachi Jain1401Delhi44Kaur Palkin1861Delhi10


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