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Over the Board tournaments are making a comeback in Pune with the 11th Alurkar Memorial rapid

by Sagar Shah - 07/02/2021

After nearly a hiatus of a year, over-the-board (OTB) tournaments are making a comeback. The 11th Late Prof.Wamanrao Dattatray Alurkar Memorial Open Rapid Chess Tournament was held on the 7th of February 2021 in Pune with 90 players taking part. The tournament was organized by the well-known Buddhibal Kreeda Trust. We bring you some of the pictures of the event and also the measures that were implemented for a smooth conduct of the event. IM Vikramaditya Kulkarni won the event with 6.0/7. He was tied at the top with Keval Nirgun.

While online chess has a received a big boost in the Covid-19 lockdown period, players all across the country and the world have been waiting for over-the-board tournaments to resume. Passionate organizers are already trying to find spacious halls, limiting the entries, so that the real chess events can begin!

Prakhash Kunte (left), the founder of Buddhibal Kreeda Trust has been powering chess in Maharashtra and India for nearly three decades now. He organized the tournament.

The 11th Late Prof.Wamanrao Dattatray Alurkar Memorial Open Rapid Chess Tournament was held in Pune at the Mehendale hall

IM Vikramaditya Kulkarni (right) and IM Abhishek Kelkar open the tournament as chief arbiter Rajendra Shidore (standing left), organizer Prakash Kunte (standing center), and deputy chief arbiter Vinita Shrotri (standing right) look on.

What were the precautions taken by the organizers?

1. Below 10 and above 65 players were not allowed as per corporation rules

2. Before entering the hall sanitization was compulsory

3. Mask was compulsory inside the playing hall

4. Appropriate distance between the players was maintained

5. More than 50 entries were rejected to keep the number of participants below 100

6. Parents were not allowed inside the hall. Separate arrangements were made for them.

7. All rules of Pune corporation were followed for social gatherings

8. Temperature check of all the players before entering the hall

9. Only 1 entry point

The organizers tried to be as careful as possible with the organization of the event

Pune Corporation guidelines released on 16th of January 2021 for sports were included in the circular for players to be aware of the safety measures

Final standings:

Rk.SNoNameFEDRtgPts. TB1  TB2  TB3 
11IMKulkarni VikramadityaIND23376,00,033,530,0
212Nirgun KevalIND16306,00,029,527,5
36Mohite RanveerIND19715,50,034,031,0
48Soham DatarIND18675,50,031,028,0
510Gaurav Rajesh ZagadeIND17055,50,028,526,0
617Mhamane SourabhIND15995,50,028,026,0
737Vaval AaditiUSA12785,50,027,025,5
815Nagare AkhileshIND16085,50,025,523,0
921FMSamant Aditya SIND15085,50,023,021,0
102FMDixit NikhilIND20955,00,033,029,5
1118Chavan NameetIND15825,00,032,029,0
1220Aryan Abhijeet ShahIND15535,00,032,028,5
1325Bhagwat HerambIND14625,00,029,526,5
144AGMKiran PanditraoIND20265,00,029,026,0
1519FMJain Kashish ManojIND15775,00,026,024,0
1626Watarkar YashIND14245,00,023,020,5
1713Mishra SanjeevIND16255,00,021,519,5
187Gaikwad SiddhantIND19534,50,029,527,5
1916Om Nagnath LamkaneIND16014,50,027,025,5
2029Khairmode DhanashreeIND14154,50,027,024,5

Complete list of final rankings

IM Vikramaditya Kulkarni won the tournament and finished 1st with Rs.3,000. The total prize fund was Rs.16,000

Recently Vikramaditya Kulkarni tweeted about his situation:

The second place went to Keval Nirgun (second from left) | Stock photo

The tournament entry was Rs.300 and a total prize fund of Rs.16,000 was disbursed. It's a nice feeling to see over-the board events coming back in the chess world. Have you organized a chess event in your city? Are you planning to organize one? You can send us a report after the tournament is over with the overall summary and pictures on and our editors will work on it and publish on the newspage. This will ensure that more people get to know about the tournaments taking place all across the country!


A big thanks to Abhishek Kelkar for providing all the information.

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