FIDE World Women’s chess: India beats Spain in the second round

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The Indian team claimed their first victory at the FIDE Women’s World Chess Championship by beating Spain 2.5-1.5 in the second group match in Sitges, Spain.

After a 2-2 draw with Azerbaijan in the first round, the Indians took advantage of R Vaishali’s victory over Sabrina Vega Gutierrez to win in the second match of Pool A on Monday night.

Team No.1 player D Harika drew against Ana Matnadze, as did Bhakti Kulkarni and Mary Ann Gomes against their respective opponents.

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Vaishali clinched a 47-stroke victory over Gutierrez in a Sicilian Four Knights Variation match to provide the crux for India.

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Apart from Harika sharing the honors with Matnadze, Kulkarni and Gomes drew respectively against Maria Eizaguerri Floris and Marta Garcia Martin.

In the remaining matches of the second round, Russia dominated France 3.5.-0.5 while Armenia drew 2-2 against Azerbaijan.

Russia leads with 7.5 points, Armenia second with 4.5 points, followed by India, also with 4.5. Four teams each from pools A and B qualify for the play-offs.

India will face Armenia in the third round later on Tuesday.

Earlier in the first round against Azerbaijan, Harika, the top player in Koneru Humpy’s absence, presumably won her match by beating Gunay Mammadzada on the first board.


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