This stellar performance came hot on the heels of his joint third-place finish in the ‘Tata Steel Chess India Rapid 2023′ the previous day. On this occasion, Praggnanandhaa’s winning streak was temporarily halted by Russian Grandmaster Alexander Grischuk, who managed to secure a draw in the sixth round.
However, the Indian prodigy experienced a pair of setbacks in rounds seven and eight, succumbing to successive defeats. Showing resilience and determination, he regrouped and finished the day on a high note, securing a win against compatriot Arjun Erigaisi in the final round.
In the overall standings after nine rounds, Praggnanandhaa leads with 6.5 points, closely pursued by Vidit Gujarathi and Alexander Grischuk, both accumulating six points.
Notable highlights of Praggnanandhaa’s impressive run include his victories over Azerbaijani GM Teimour Radjabov, rapid champion Maxime Vachier-Lagrave of France, and German GM Vincent Keymar. His tactical finesse and endgame mastery shone through as he continued his unbeaten streak, defeating Nodirbek Abdusattorov of Uzbekistan and Indian GM Harikrishna Pentala.
Although he faced an 86-move draw against Grischuk, Praggnanandhaa’s remarkable journey was briefly interrupted by Vidit Gujarathi’s clutch victory. He suffered another setback with a loss to D Gukesh in the eighth round. Nevertheless, Praggnanandhaa’s rapid recovery and an impressive win against GM Erigaisi in the final round reinforced his position at the top of the leaderboard.
Praggnanandhaa’s extraordinary performance at the Tata Steel Chess India Blitz 2023 solidified his reputation as a rising star in the world of chess.
(With inputs from PTI)