Chennai, Jan. 26:
GM Pantsulaia Levan (Georgia) with 8.5 points emerged the Champion after the tenth and final round in the 11th Chennai Open International Grandmaster Chess tournament 2019 for Sakthi Group Dr N Mahalingam Trophy at Novotel IBIS OMR Hotel, Sholinganallur.
In the crucial final round, Pantsulaia drew with top seed GM Predke Alexandr of Russia, moving to 8.5 points. The draw propelled the Georgian to clear first. This follows Pantsulaia’s title triumph at Delhi Open last fortnight, giving him back-to-back titles, a great start for 2019. The Georgian would take home the winner’s cheque of Rs. 3 lakhs along with the handsome Sakthi Group Dr N Mahalingam Trophy.
Sharing the second spot with 8.0 points were five Grandmasters viz., Popov Ivan (Russia), Aleksandrov Aleksej (Belarus), Paichadze Luka (Georgia), Megaranto Susanto (Indonesia) and Rozum Ivan (Russia). The top seeds had their say in the final round, as all the decisive games in the top ten boards went in favor of the higher rated player.
The 15 lakh prize money tournament came to a glittering end, as the trophies and cash prizes were handed over to he winners’ by the chief guest International Master Manuel Aaron. Present in the dais were D V Sundar, Vice President, FIDE, Stephen Balasamy P, Gen. Secretary, Tamil Nadu State Chess Association, International Arbiter R Anantharam and Chief Arbiter Manjunatha M.
Final Placings: 1. Pantsulaia Levan (Georgia) 8.5, 2-6 Popov Ivan (Russia), Aleksandrov Aleksej (Belarus), Paichadze Luka (Georgia), Megaranto Susanto (Indonesia), Ivan Rozum (Russia) 8.0, 7-10 Lugovskoy Maxim (Russia), Karthik Venkataraman (India), Predke Alexandr (Russia), Girish A Koushik (India) 7.5 points
Round 10 Results (Indians unless specified): Pantsulaia Levan (Geo) 8.5 drew with Predke Alexandr (Rus) 7.5, Popov Ivan (Rus) 8 bt Lugovskoy Maxim (Rus) 7.5, Rozum Ivan (Rus) 8 bt Deviatkin Andrei (Rus) 7, Paichadze Luka (Geo) 8 bt Padmini Rout 7, Aleksandro Aleksej (Blr) 8 bt Nguyen Van Huy (Vie) 7, Megaranto Susanto (Ina) 8 bt Pranesh M 7, Vignesh N R 7.5 drew wih Karthik Venkataraman 7.5, Sahoo Utkal Ranjan (6.5) lost to Tran Tuan Minh (Vie) 7.5