Caruana takes sole lead in AAI Chess

June 24th, 2011 - 10:22 pm ICT by IANS  

New Delhi, June 24 (IANS) Maintaining his winning streak, top-seeded Fabiano Caruana of Italy defeated women’s World champion Hou Yifan of China for a third successive win in the inaugural AAI Grandmasters Chess Championship here Friday.

In another third round game, India’s Parimarjan Negi drew with Filipino Wesley So.

The win over Hou gave Caruana a perfect three out of three with seven rounds to go in the category 17 tournament, the highest-ever in India. Negi and So have 1.5 points with a win and a draw each. HOu is yet to score.

On the third table, Krishnan Sasikiran of India was close to his first win against Viktor Laznicka of the Czech Republic. Sasi and Laznicka had already played out 60 moves with the Indian holding a slight advantage.

The shy and soft-spoken Caruana was pleased with his win and said he was beginning to feel comfortable. “It is a new country and I always worry before a tournament and it is a strong tournament. But with three wins, it has been a great start.” He won comfortably in 37 moves.

On his game Friday, the US-born Italian, who was beating Hou for the second time in four meetings, said: “It was a normal game. We played a Spanish opening and this variation was played long ago, I think by Shirov. I equalized and had no problems. Till a certain point it was equal and she had chances to draw. But she got over-ambitious at some point and I saw that I was much better.”

So and Negi, who have played to three draws before, had a fourth draw here in a Sicilian. Negi said: “It was a normal game. It did look at time black (Negi) was better, but there was no clear advantage for me. We decided to draw after 30 moves when there was nothing in it.”

It was the first draw in three days.

So, who was disappointed with his loss Thursday, said: “I wanted to win with white pieces, but there was just nothing there. I played very badly in second round and wanted to make up.”

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