The inaugural Airports Authority of India (AAI) Grandmaster chess tournament got off to a rousing start, as all three games ended in a decisive manner at the AAI Officer’s Institute on Wednesday.
The young and energetic field, with an average age of just over 20 years but 2662 in Elo Ratings, produced some exciting games. The Indian duo, however, had a disappointing start with both Krishnan Saskiran (black) and Parimarjan Negi losing their games. Sasi (white) lost to Wesley So in 38 moves before the time control while Negi went down to top seed and World Junior No. 1, Fabiano Caruana in 47 moves.
So, the young Filipino, scored a fine win over Sasi just before the first time control, as the Indian facing a clear loss allowed the flag to fall as he had three more moves to make with three second left on his clock. Negi lost his way around the late stages against Caruana.
Results (R1): P. Negi lost to F. Caruana; H. Yifan lost to V. Laznicka; W. So beat K. Sasikiran
Draw for second round: F. Caruana (Ita) v K Sasikiran (Ind); V Laznicka (Cze) v W So (Phi); P Negi (Ind) v H Yifan (Chn)