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Super Juniors Cup Pre Quarter-Finals: Aronyak eliminates Gukesh

by Shahid Ahmed - 08/12/2020

Super Juniors Cup had an amazing day 3 as IM Aronyak Ghosh eliminated GM Gukesh and IM Aditya Mittal delivered a checkmate to GM Praggnanandhaa. Day 3 witnessed five whitewashes and two Armageddons. IM Rahul Srivasthav played his second Armageddon of the event, unlike the previous occasion, this time he was not victorious. GM Raunak Sadhwani and GM Iniyan P are the only two player to have two whitewash in the entire event. Quarter-Finals will start tomorrow from 3 p.m. IST with a best of six games per match. You don't want to miss any of the LIVE action, so tune in to ChessBase India youtube channel tomorrow at 3 p.m. IST. Photo: ChessBase India

Aditya checkmates Praggnanandhaa

Day 2 of the Super Juniors Cup witnessed two Armageddons. First won was won by GM Aryan Chopra and the second one by IM Aronyak Ghosh. Five matches needed only three games to decide a winner and all three of them were 3-0 whitewash. GM Raunak Sadhwani and GM Iniyan P are the only two players who did two whitewash in both of their matches which means they have six victories in the entire event. Highlight of the day was definitely Aronyak eliminating Gukesh, second best was Aditya checkmating Praggnanandhaa.

16 players of the Super Juniors Cup Pre Quarter-Finals | Photo: ChessBase India

Nihal Sarin - Rathanvel VS: 3-0

Rathanvel got a good opportunity to draw the King and many pawns endgame but he missed it.

Nihal - Rathanvel, Game 1

Position after 28.exd4

Find out how black can hold this position to a draw after 28.exd4

In a seemingly equal position, Rathanvel made a huge blunder in the final moments of the second game which cost him the full point.

Nihal won the third game comfortably, after Rathanvel erred early in the opening.

Nihal put up a dominating performance against Rathanvel | Photo: ChessBase India

Praggnanandhaa - Aditya: 3-1

IM Aditya Mittal went ultra passive in the first game against GM Praggnanandhaa in the first game and lost.

Praggnanandhaa - Aditya, Game 1

Position after 13...Nh5

Black should have played Nh5 earlier. In an already cramped position 13...Nh5 did not help black's case.

Aditya got some serious chance in the second game but unfortunately for him, he missed it.

Aditya - Praggnanandhaa, Game 2

Position after 21...Nd6

White has a good opportunity here. What is it?

Aditya played ambitiously in the third game and he rewarded himself with a victory by checkmate.

Praggnanandhaa - Aditya

Position after 24.Nc3

Find out why 24.Nc3 is a mistake and what white could have done instead.

Aditya tried too hard to push for a win in a seemingly equal position and he lost eventually. Draw wasn't enough for him to force Armageddon, thus Aditya went for a win.

Aditya managed to notch a victory over Praggnanandhaa | Photo: ChessBase India

Gukesh D - Aronyak Ghosh: 2.5-2.5*

GM Gukesh vs IM Aronyak Ghosh was the highly anticipated match of the Pre Quarter-Finals and it didn't disappoint. It was not the best day version Gukesh as he missed quite a few chances in the very first game.

Aronyak - Gukesh, Game 1

Position after 24...e5

24...e5 is certainly not the best move. Find out why.

Position after 33.Rd4

Black is completely winning here if the correct decision is made. What is the correct continuation for black after 33.Rd4 ?

The second game was an uneventful draw. Aronyak won the third game and took a 1-0 lead.

Aronyak - Gukesh, Game 3

Position after 27...Ra8

Gukesh made a passive move of 27...Ra8 which certainly gave white the decisive advantage.

Aronyak made a questionable choice early in the opening which allowed Gukesh to gain advantage.

Gukesh - Aronyak, Game 4

Position after 8...Bd7

Aronyak's bishop retreat 8...Bd7 was too passive and loss of tempo gave Gukesh the initiative he was looking for. Gukesh won the game, equalized the score 2-2 and forced an Armageddon.

Gukesh made a huge unforced error in the Armageddon which completely shifted the balance in Aronyak's favor.

Gukesh - Aronyak, Armageddon

Position after 17.exd4

White should have played 17.Qxd4. Find out the best continuation for black after 17.exd4. Aronyak had a mate in two but he made a draw in the end because as per Armageddon rules, draw was enough for him to advance to the next round.

Aronyak stunned Gukesh by winning the Armageddon by making a draw in the winning position.| Photo: ChessBase India

Raunak Sadhwani - Harikrishnan Ra: 3-0

IM Harikrishnan Ra showed that he came well prepared for a battle against the in-form GM Raunak Sadhwani. Harikrishnan blundered a knight in a seemingly equal position and then lost eventually. However, it was not completely lost despite being down by a knight.

Raunak - Harikrishnan, Game 1

Position after 53.Kg3

When you are in time scramble, it might be difficult to find the correct move order especially when the move is anti-positional and you are down to the last few seconds. Find out the correct continuation for black to save the game.

In the second game, Harikrishnan misplayed early in the game and it became difficult for him to get back in the game later.

Harikrishnan - Raunak, Game 2

Position after 12...Bd7

How should white continue after 12...Bd7 ?

Harikrishnan went wrong early in the opening which cost him a pawn. Despite being worse for the majority of the game, he got a half chance to equalize the game end.

Raunak - Harikrishnan, Game 3

Position after 32.Rd1

Those who watched the live stream knows Sagar found the correct continuation for black here which would have still eliminated Harikrishnan from the tournament anyway as the score would have been 2.5-1.5 in Raunak's favor. What is the best move for black here?

Raunak made another 3-0 whitewash to advance to the Quarter-Finals | Photo: ChessBase India

Arjun Erigaisi - Arjun Kalyan: 3-0

GM Arjun Erigaisi scored a beautiful win with a positional squeeze against IM Arjun Kalyan in the first game.

Kalyan - Erigaisi, Game 1

Position after 22.Bf4

At a first glance 22.Bf4 may not seem like a huge mistake but if you find what black can do then you will understand the magnitude of this inaccuracy.

Erigaisi made another positional squeeze to win the second game.

Erigaisi - Kalyan, Game 2

Position after 22.f5

Erigaisi did not hide his intentions of a pawn storm on the kingside with 22.f5. What would you do here as black?

Kalyan got a very good opportunity to make a comeback in Game 3, but he couldn't seize it.

Kalyan - Erigaisi, Game 3

Position after 30...Qf6

It is evident that white is the one who is in firm control. How should white capitalize it?

Arjun Erigaisi won the 'Battle of the Arjuns' | Photo: ChessBase India

Abhimanyu Puranik - Raja Rithvik: 3-0

IM Rithvik Raja R made a tactical error early in the middle game and Abhimanyu seized the opportunity.

Abhimanyu - Rithvik, Game 1

Position after 15...Na5

Why 15...Na5 is not a correct move for black here?

In the second game, Rithvik made a positional inaccuracy and once again Abhimanyu took the opportunity which his opponent presented him.

Rithvik - Abhimanyu, Game 2

Position after 27.Ng4

Find out an incredible idea for black after 27.Ng4

Position after 30...Qxd8

A slight change of move order has allowed white to get back in the game. Find out how.

The third game turned out to be a topsy-turvy one. Abhimanyu had an advantage for the better part of the game, till he allowed Rithvik's b-pawn to become a monster passed pawn.

Abhimanyu - Rithvik, Game 3

Position after 31.a3

What is the winning plan for black here? Rithvik missed his opportunity and eventually blundered a piece to lose the game and the match.

Abhimanyu advanced to the Quarter-Finals with a 3-0 victory over Rithvik | Photo: ChessBase India

Aryan Chopra - Rahul Srivasthav: 3*-2

IM Rahul Srivasthav had a poor start as he made a simple tactical error which cost him the game and he resigned on the 16th move.

Aryan had a decent advantage for the majority of the game, however in the end he misjudged his king's escape from a checkmate threat.

Rahul - Aryan, Game 2

Position after 28.Nf6

What is the only way to escape for black after 28.Nf6 ?

In a seemingly equal double rook and knight endgame Aryan blundered an exchange which gave Rahul the upper hand but he returned it.

Aryan - Rahul, Game 3

Position after 42...Ra7

The game continued with 43.Rg7 which turned things into black's favor. Find out what was the better continuation for white here.

Rahul leading the match by 2-1, played the fourth game bravely by sacrificing his knight for two pawns.

Rahul - Aryan, Game 4

Position after 18.Nxg5

Things were going completely in Rahul's way but he missed a good opportunity.

Position after 26...Qe7

Find out the best continuation for white after 26...Qe7. The game went on with 26.Nc6 which allowed black to get back in the game. In the end, Rahul blundered a rook and lost the game. Thus going into his second Armageddon of the event.

Aryan had the upper hand in the middle game but in the endgame it was Rahul who was completely winning the Armageddon. Win is what he needed to advance and that is exactly what he had.

Rahul - Aryan, Armageddon

Position after 41...f6

One of the best chance Rahul had in the entire endgame was after 41...f6. Find out the winning continuation for white here.

Rahul was very close to winning his second Armageddon of the event | Photo: ChessBase India

Iniyan P - Srihari L R: 3-0

Despite having a rocky start, FM Srihari L R got a few chances to equalize but he panicked in time pressure and blundered a pawn.

Srihari - Iniyan, Game 1

Position after 26...h6

The game went on with 27.Nd5 which is not the best move. What should have white played instead?

In the second game, Iniyan kept pushing to increase his advantage against Srihari but he would not budge. Eventually Iniyan got his breakthrough.

Iniyan - Srihari, Game 2

Position after 47...Reb7

Find out what is the right breakthrough for white here, after 47...Reb7

Srihari played solid in Game 3 and got a winning opportunity only at the end of the knight endgame which he missed due to time scramble.

Srihari - Iniyan, Game 3

Position after 44...Kd3

This is a winning endgame for white after 44...Kd3. Can you find out how?

Iniyan won both matches 3-0 | Photo: ChessBase India

*- Winnner of the Armageddon

Brackets after Day 3

Quarter-Finalists are revealed | Photo: ChessBase India

Replay all Round 2 games from Day 3

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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