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Super Juniors Cup: Isha impressive against Praggnanandhaa

by Shahid Ahmed - 07/12/2020

Super Juniors Cup had an interesting day 2 as Vantika beat Aryan Chopra on the very first game of the day and Isha stretched Praggnanandhaa to his limit. Raunak, Iniyan and Praggnanandhaa took only three games to win their respective matches. 50% of the matches needed only three games to decide a victor today. GM Arjun Erigaisi, IM Arjun Kalyan, IM Rathanvel and IM Rahul Srivasthav advance to Round 2 along with the previously mentioned winners. IM Rahul Srivasthav won the only Armageddon of the day. Round 2 which will consist of 16 players who advanced to the Pre Quarter-Finals will start tomorrow from 2 p.m. IST. Catch all the action LIVE on ChessBase India youtube channel. Photo: ChessBase India

Vantika starts the day with an upset

Unlike Day 1 of Super Juniors Cup, all five GMs advanced to Round 2 smoothly. Although Aryan Chopra started his day with a loss and Praggnanandhaa was on the brink of a loss on two different occasion in the same game against Isha. Raunak Sadhwani, Iniyan P and Praggnanandhaa R took only three games to win their respective matches and advance to Round 2. IM Rahul Srivasthav won the only Armageddon of the day.

8 eliminated out 32 after the end of Day 1 in Super Juniors Cup | Photo: ChessBase India

Praggnanandhaa - Isha: 2.5-0.5

WIM Isha Sharma got a good opportunity to stir up trouble for Praggnanandhaa but she couldn't seize it.

Isha - Praggnanandhaa, Game 1

Position after 19...Kf8

White got only one half-chance in the game to gain the upper hand and that is after 19...Kf8. Find out what was it. Eventually white made a simple tactical error, lost the queen and the game.

In the second game, Isha got a couple of good opportunities which she missed, even Praggnanandhaa also capitalizing in the Queen endgame.

Praggnanandhaa - Isha, Game 2

Position after 41.Bd4

The game continued with 41...Qb5. Find out the better continuation for black.

Position after 67.g4

One of the final opportunity black had was in the pawn endgame after 67.g4. Can you find the win for black here?

In the third game, Isha made a simple one-move tactical error and immediately resigned the game after 22nd move.

Isha really put up a good fight against Praggnanandhaa | Photo: ChessBase India

Mitrabha Guha - Rathanvel V S: 2.5-1.5

Mitrabha made some incorrect decisions in the middle game which helped Rathanvel to gain the upper hand.

Mitrabha - Rathanvel, Game 1

Position after 16...Nd5

Should white take on d5 or go for something else after 16...Nd5 ?

Mitrabha made a huge tactical error in the seemingly equal endgame which cost him the entire game.

Rathanvel - Mitrabha, Game 2

Position after 22...Bxe5

Find out why 22...Bxe5 is a blunder and what black could have done instead.

Mitrabha won on demand after Rathanvel blundered in the same colored bishop endgame.

Mitrabha once again went for the same line in the Advance Caro-Kann. This time he landed himself in deeper trouble.

Rathanvel - Mitrabha, Game 4

Position after 14...Nc6

Find out why 14...Nc6 is a huge mistake and what black should have played instead.

Rathanvel got the better of Mitrabha this time | Photo: ChessBase India

Iniyan P - Sankalp Gupta: 3-0

IM Sankalp Gupta got overambitious which he acknowledged in the post-match interview and squandered a draw by perpetual check in the first game and lost the first game. He was already having a poor position for the better part of the game.

Iniyan - Sankalp, Game 1

Position after 38.Kg1

The position is not a draw, white can easily save the king from a perpetual. All black needed was to play 38...Rh4+ one more time to make it a draw but he played 38...Qf4 and there was no win for black, thus he lost the game.

Sankalp lost the second game in just 18 moves after he made a mistake in the opening.

Sankalp - Iniyan, Game 2

Position after 13.Re3

Find out why 13.Re3 is a mistake and what white should have played instead to avoid trouble.

In the third game also Sankalp got no chance and Iniyan comfortably scored a victory.

Iniyan scored a 3-0 whitewash over Sankalp | Photo: ChessBase India

Arjun Kalyan - Koustav Chatterjee: 2.5-0.5

IM Koustav Chatterjee made an incorrect decision early in the game which made things into his opponent IM Arjun Kalyan's favor.

Arjun Kalyan - Koustav, Game 1

Position after 13...e5

Find out why 13...e5 is a bad idea for black and what he could have done instead. White wrapped up the game in the next five moves.

In the second game, Arjun Kalyan made a tactical error which cost him a pawn. Despite having a decisive advantage for the better part of the game, Koustav couldn't convert it into a win.

Koustav - Arjun Kalyan, Game 2

Position after 26...Bh3

White is completely winning after 26...Bh3. Find out the best continuation for white here.

Position after 51...g5+

Koustav panicked in time scramble and blundered with 52.Qxg5+. White was completely winning after 52.Kg4 as there is no perpetual and white is completely fine here.

The third game had a topsy-turvy finish where Koustav missed some good chances to convert his advantage and stay in the event for the fourth game.

Arjun Kalyan - Koustav, Game 3

Position after 36.Rd5

The best chance black had in the game was after 36.Rd5. While analyzing this game live, this move popped up in my head but since both players were blitzing out moves, I couldn't calculate it correctly and find out if it really does work. After checking with the computer, turns out, it actually does work. Can you find out what it is?

Arjun Kalyan advanced to Round 2 by beating Koustav 2.5-0.5 | Photo: ChessBase India

Raunak Sadhwani - Neelash Saha: 3-0

In the first game, IM Neelash Saha seemed to have gotten a huge positional advantage against GM Raunak Sadhwani. However he couldn't maintain it and Raunak turned things around at the first opportunity

Neelash - Raunak, Game 1

Position after 25...Bf8

Here white made a questionable decision of playing 26.Bd6 which turned the tables. Find out what white should have played instead to maintain his advantage.

In the second game, instead of playing actively, Neelash locked up the position which turned things into Raunak's favor.

Raunak - Neelash, Game 2

Position after 14.e5

How should black react to 14.e5 ? Eventually black ran out of time when the final position seemed to be equal.

Raunak won the third game comfortably, scoring a 3-0 whitewash to advance to the next round.

Raunak is in terrific form which showed in his play | Photo: ChessBase India

Rahul Srivasthav - Bharath Subramaniyam: 2-2 (Armageddon 1-0)

IM Bharath Subramaniyam made some questionable choice in the endgame which completely destroyed his pawn structure and gave his opponent IM Rahul Srivasthav, a decisive advantage.

Bharath - Rahul, Game 1

Position after 21.Rxd3

Find out why 21.Rxd3 is incorrect and what white should have done instead.

In the second game, Bharath got an interesting opportunity but he did not take it since he already started the event with a loss.

Rahul - Bharath, Game 2

Position after 21.Nf4

What does 21.Nf4 invite? Rahul made a mistake in the endgame eventually and Bharath capitalized on it to equalize the score 1-1.

Bharath blundered a piece early in the middle game and he was in a completely lost position. However, he did not give up and continued his fight.

Bharath - Rahul, Game 3

Position after 34...Kh7

Find out how 34...Kh7 allows white to get back in the game.

Rahul kept the game imbalanced as much as possible to keep his winning chances alive. Eventually Bharath made a mistake in the endgame.

Rahul - Bharath, Game 4

Position after 43...Kf8

Black made an incorrect decision with 43...Kf8. Find out what was the better continuation instead. Thus the score became 2-2 and second Armageddon of the event was enforced.

Rahul got a fantastic position early in the middle game and he did not have to look back after that.

Rahul - Bharath, Armageddon

Position after 13...Ne5

13...Ne5 is a big positional mistake as it invites trouble with 14.f4 which is what happened in the game. White's position became so good that almost everything seemed to be winning.

Rahul finished well against Bharath to advance to the next stage | Photo: ChessBase India

Arjun Erigaisi - Krishnater Kushager: 2.5-1.5

IM Krishnater managed to get a good position in the first game but he couldn't capitalize against GM Arjun Erigaisi.

Krishnater - Erigaisi, Game 1

Position after 16...Nxb2

Find out the best continuation for white after 16...Nxb2. The game went on with 17.Bxh7 which is not the best continuation for white.

Despite having a difficult start, Krishnater got a good opportunity to make a comeback in the second game but he missed.

Erigaisi - Krishnater, Game 2

Position after 22.Nd6

22.Nd6 at a first glance may look deadly but it's a mistake. Why?

Krishnater got a fantastic position early in the opening against Arjun as the latter misplayed and got his pieces all cramped up.

Krishnater - Erigaisi, Game 3

Position after 14.Bb6

Black got in deep trouble very early in the game. Even Vidit Gujrathi said that this game is something he would like to take a look later. This is arguably the most exhilarating game of the tournament so far.

Postion after 24...Qf2

Just when it seemed like black has managed to save the day, he blundered with 24...Qf2. Once again white got back his advantage and this time he didn't let it slip from his grasp.

The fourth game was a tepid draw.

Arjun Erigaisi comfortably beat Krishnater Kushager 2.5-1.5 to advance to Round 2 | Photo: ChessBase India

Aryan Chopra - Vantika Agrawal: 3-1

WIM Vantika Agrawal started the day with an upset as she defeated GM Aryan Chopra when he missed a simple tactic.

Aryan - Vantika, Game 1

Position after 14...b5

When white is going for all out attack on the kingside, black should also retaliate by launching a counter-attack on the queenside.

Position after 18...Nd5

The game continued with 19.exd6 which is a blunder. Can you find out why?

Aryan struck back immediately by winning the second game. Although he missed a quicker win.

Vantika - Aryan, Game 2

Position after 29.Ne6

Find out why 29.Ne6 is a blunder and what white should have played instead.

Vantika got herself a very good position in the third game but she made an incorrect invasion which turned things into Aryan's favor.

Aryan - Vantika, Game 3

Position after 23.h4

The game continued with 23..Nd3 which is certainly not the best move. What should have black played instead? It is something we often miss while playing a game.

Vantika was better for the majority of Game 4, only in the middle game she slipped once which allowed Aryan to gain an important pawn which he missed. Even the final position was also winning for her.

Vantika - Aryan, Game 4

Position after 35...Qc8

One of the best chances white in the middle game was after 35...Qc8. Can you find the best continuation for white here?

Position after 58...Kxg8

The final Bishop vs. Knight endgame was also winning for white. Vantika in the post-match interview said that she didn't realize that she repeated moves and the game ended up in a threefold repetition draw. Aryan acknowledged the fact that both player made a lot of inaccuracies in this game under time pressure.

Vantika definitely gave Aryan a run for his money starting from Game 1 | Photo: ChessBase India

Brackets after Day 2

16 players of Round 2 is revealed | Photo: ChessBase India

Replay all Round 1 games from Day 2

Replay the live stream

Live commentary by IM Sagar Shah and Amruta Mokal | Video: ChessBase India


6th, 7th and 8th December - Matches start at 2 p.m. IST

9th and 10th December - Matches start at 3 p.m. IST


Prizes Prizes
1st 125000
2nd 75000
3rd 40000
4th 25000
5th 15000
6th 15000
7th 15000
8th 15000

9th - 16th ₹10000 each, 17th - 32nd ₹5000 each.

Total Prize Fund: ₹520,000.

Best female Prize: Rs.20,000



Tournament Announcement

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