Meenakshi Stuns Vijayalakshmi

Vijayalakshmi Still Champion
 

IWM TITLE FOR SAHELI BARUA, IWM NORM FOR MEENAKSHI
 

In the match between two sisters, S. Meenakshi, the younger sister unexpectedly defeated her elder sister, S. Vijayalakshmi to tie for the first place in the 13th and final round of the XXVI Women’s National ‘A’ Chess Championship. Vijayalakshmi merged champion on better tie-break score. The tournament, which started on 7th June 2000 and lasted for 13 days, was held at the Raja Hotel, Kalyan. This event, being conducted in the Thane district for the first time, was co-sponsored by the Kalyan Dombivli Municipal Corporation.

In the most sensational match today S. Vijayalakshmi and S. Meenakshi, the two sisters from Chennai didn’t settle for a draw to the surprise of everybody and fought bitterly.  The game started with an irregular queen pawn opening and entered an interesting middle game.  The players castled on opposite sides and a hair-raising battle arose.  The centre was closed and both the players started attacking each other’s king side.   Meenakshi’s pieces turned out to be better placed in the ensuing fierce attack and she systematically exploited her advantage.  Meenakshi opened up the ‘h’ file and also exchanged off Viji’s
fianchettoed king’s bishop, the best defender of white’s king.  Viji was forced to give up one pawn to divert Meenakshi’s pieces from setting up a mating net.  After that it was a very easy task for Meenakshi who exchanged pieces and entered a minor piece ending. Viji resigned when she was forced into a lost king and pawn ending.

Grand Double For Saheli Barua
Saheli Dhar Barua also bagged a double - a berth for the Istanbul Olympiad and the IWM title after drawing against Sujatha to get her second and final IWM norm. Meenakshi in her fourth attempt at the National ‘A’ performed incredibly to grab the second spot and earned her maiden IWM norm while Saheli Dhar Barua with eight points had to settle for the third spot and Pallavi Shah after aggregating 7.5 points clinched the fourth spot. The top four players will represent India at the Olympiad scheduled for Istanbul in October.

In crucial encounters today things went  Pallavi’s way as she outsmarted her inexperienced opponent Baisakhi Das within an hour while the other contenders Bhagyashree Thipsay and Safira Shanaz who would have tied with her for the fourth spot drew and lost their respective encounters to bow out of the race.

Meenakshi and Saheli were the only players in the tournament to maintain a clean slate having drawn most of their encounters. Five times National champions and Padmashree awardees Anupama Gokhale and Bhagyashree Thipsay failed to make it to the team as did reigning World Under-18 Girls champion Aarthie Ramaswamy.

The tournament, which started on 7th June 2000 and  lasted for 13 days, was held at the Raja Hotel, Kalyan.  This event, being conducted in the Thane district for the first time, was co-sponsored by the Kalyan Dombivli Municipal Corporation.

Saheli Barua played aggressively in an Irregular game against Sujatha, training all her artillery on the king side and shattered Sujatha's castle. Saheli with her queen and rook penetrated onto the eighth rank and bishop and knight also joined the action on the king side appeared well poised for victory. But after winning a couple of pawns she missed the winning continuation and settled for a draw after 37 moves in an unclear position after Sujatha had driven away all her pieces from her territory and was threatening to win a piece. Saheli had earned her first WGM eleven game norm at Goodricke Calcutta in 1997 and completed her second 13 game norm here( The norms should span 24 games if one of the norms is a round robin one).

Double Disappointment For Safira Shanaz
Safira Shanaz had to face double disappointment having missed qualifying chances as well as her final IWM norm by a very narrow margin. Today adopting the King's Indian Defence, Aarthie punished Safira's passive play by winning an exchange to post a comfortable victory. In a King's Indian Attack game between Bhagyashree and tail ender Neha Singh, the former despite a pawn advantage failed to convert and had to settle for a draw after 46 moves.

RESULTS:  IWM Bhagyashree Thipsay (IDBI : 7) drew Neha Singh (Bih; 3.5); Y Pratibha (TN; 3.5) lost to IWM Anupama Gokhale (BPCL; 6.5); IWM Pallavi Shah (LIC; 7.5) bt Baisakhi Das (W.B.; 1.5); Sujatha (T.N.; 4) drew WFM Saheli Dhar Barua (Railways; 8); IWM S Vijayalakshmi (IA; 8.5) lost to S Meenakshi (T.N.; 8.5);  Safira Shanaz (T.N; 6.5) lost to IWM R Aarthie (WIPRO; 6 ); IWM Swati Ghate (LIC; 7) Bye.

Final Standings: 1. IWM S Vijayalakshmi (8.5), 2.S Meenakshi (8.5), 3.WFM Saheli Dhar Barua (8);
WIM Pallavi Shah (7.5); WIM Swati Ghate (7); WIM Bhagyashree Thipsay (7.5).

The moves:

[Event "Women's National 'A'"]
[Site "?"]
[Date "????.??.??"]
[Round "13"]
[White "Pallavi Shah"]
[Black "Baisakhi Das"]
[Result "1-0"]
[ECO "B43"]
[WhiteElo "2138"]
[BlackElo "2135"]
[PlyCount "39"]
1. e4 c5 2. Nf3 e6 3. d4 cxd4 4. Nxd4 a6 5. Nc3 Qc7 6. Be3 Bb4 7. Bd2 Nf6 8. Bd3 Nc6 9. Nb3 b5 10. O-O Be7 11. f4 d6 12. Qf3 Bb7 13. Qh3 h5 14. Rae1 Ng4 15. Kh1 Kd7 16. Nd5 exd5 17. exd5 Rag8 18. dxc6+ Bxc6 19. Bf5+ Kd8 20. Ba5 1-0

[Event "Women's National 'A'"]
[Site "?"]
[Date "????.??.??"]
[Round "13"]
[White "Safira Shahnaz"]
[Black "R. Aarthie"]
[Result "0-1"]
[ECO "E63"]
[WhiteElo "2136"]
[BlackElo "2219"]
[PlyCount "60"]
1. d4 Nf6 2. Nf3 g6 3. g3 Bg7 4. Bg2 O-O 5. O-O d6 6. c4 Nc6 7. Nc3 a6 8. b3 Rb8 9. a4 a5 10. Bb2 Nd7 11. e4 e5 12. dxe5 Ndxe5 13. Ne1 f5 14. exf5 Bxf5 15. h3 Nb4 16. g4 Bd3 17. Nxd3 Nexd3 18. Qd2 Nxb2 19. Qxb2 Qf6 20. Rac1 Nd3 21. Qd2 Nxc1 22. Rxc1 Qd4 23. Qe1 Rbe8 24. Qf1 Qd2 25. Bd5+ Kh8 26. Ne4 Qf4 27. Ng3 Bd4 28. Kh1 Bxf2 29. Ne2 Rxe2 30. Qxe2 Qxc1+ 0-1

[Event "Women's National 'A'"]
[Site "?"]
[Date "????.??.??"]
[Round "13"]
[White "Y. Prathiba"]
[Black "Anupama Gokhale"]
[Result "0-1"]
[ECO "B09"]
[WhiteElo "2091"]
[BlackElo "2197"]
[PlyCount "68"]
1. e4 g6 2. d4 Bg7 3. Nc3 d6 4. f4 Nf6 5. Nf3 O-O 6. Bd3 Na6 7. O-O c5 8. d5 Rb8 9. Bc4 b5 10. Nxb5 Nxe4 11. Qe2 Nf6 12. Nxa7 Nb4 13. c3 Nbxd5 14. Nc6 Qc7 15. Nxb8 Qxb8 16. Rd1 Bb7 17. a4 Qa8 18. Bb5 Nh5 19. Rf1 e6 20. Ng5 h6 21. Ne4 Rd8 22. Ng3 Nxg3 23. hxg3 h5 24. Bd2 Nf6 25. Rfd1 Ng4 26. Be1 d5 27. a5 d4 28. a6 Bd5 29. c4 Be4 30. Ba5 d3 31. Qe1 Bd4+ 32. Qe3 Bxe3+ 33. Kf1 Bxg2+ 34. Ke1 Qf3 0-1

[Event "Women's National 'A'"]
[Site "?"]
[Date "????.??.??"]
[Round "13"]
[White "S. Sujatha"]
[Black "Saheli Dhar Barua"]
[Result "1/2-1/2"]
[ECO "A04"]
[WhiteElo "2000"]
[BlackElo "2185"]
[PlyCount "74"]
1. Nf3 f5 2. g3 Nf6 3. Bg2 g6 4. d3 Bg7 5. Nbd2 d5 6. O-O O-O 7. c3 Nc6 8. Re1 e5 9. e4 dxe4 10. dxe4 f4 11. Qb3+ Kh8 12. Ng5 Qe7 13. Nf1 Nh5 14. Nf3 Rb8 15. N1d2 Bg4 16. Qc2 Rf7 17. b4 Rbf8 18. Nh4 fxg3 19. fxg3 Rf2 20. Rf1 Qf6 21. Nhf3 Rxf1+ 22. Kxf1 Bh6 23. Kg1 Be3+ 24. Kh1 Bxd2 25. Nxd2 Qf2 26. Ba3 Rd8 27. Bc1 Qe1+ 28. Nf1 Rd1 29. Kg1 Kg7 30. Qf2 Qxc3 31. Bb2 Qxb4 32. Rxd1 Bxd1 33. Ne3 Ba4 34. Nd5 Qd6 35. g4 Nf6 36. Ba3 Qd8 37. Be7 Nxg4 1/2-1/2

[Event "Women's National 'A'"]
[Site "?"]
[Date "????.??.??"]
[Round "13"]
[White "S. Vijayalakshmi"]
[Black "S. Meenakshi"]
[Result "0-1"]
[ECO "A07"]
[WhiteElo "2383"]
[BlackElo "2195"]
[PlyCount "94"]
1. Nf3 d5 2. g3 Nf6 3. Bg2 c6 4. O-O Bf5 5. b3 e6 6. Bb2 Nbd7 7. d4 Bd6 8. Nbd2 Qc7 9. c4 h5 10. c5 Be7 11. b4 Ne4 12. Nxe4 Bxe4 13. Ne1 Bxg2 14. Nxg2 h4 15. Qd3 hxg3 16. hxg3 O-O-O 17. b5 Rh6 18. bxc6 Qxc6 19. a4 Rdh8 20. f3 Qc7 21. Kf2 g5 22. Rg1 Rh2 23. c6 bxc6 24. Qa6+ Qb7 25. Qxb7+ Kxb7 26. Rgb1 Kc7 27. Bc3 Rb8 28. Ba5+ Nb6 29. Rb3 Rhh8 30. Rab1 Rb7 31. Ne1 Rhb8 32. Nd3 Kc8 33. Bxb6 Rxb6 34. Rxb6 Rxb6 35. Rxb6 axb6 36. Ne5 Bf6 37. Nxf7 Bxd4+ 38. Kg2 Bf6 39. Kh3 Kc7 40. Kg4 b5 41. axb5 cxb5 42. f4 gxf4 43. Kxf4 b4 44. Ke3 Kd7 45. g4 Ke7 46. g5 Kxf7 47. gxf6 Kxf6 0-1 .

[Event "Women's National 'A'"]
[Site "?"]
[Date "????.??.??"]
[Round "13"]
[White "Bhagyashree Thipsay"]
[Black "Neha Singh"]
[Result "1/2-1/2"]
[ECO "B33"]
[WhiteElo "2247"]
[BlackElo "2019"]
[PlyCount "83"]
1. e4 c5 2. Nf3 Nc6 3. d4 cxd4 4. Nxd4 e6 5. Nc3 Qb6 6. Nb3 Nf6 7. Bd3 a6 8. O-O Be7 9. Kh1 d6 10. f4 h5 11. Qe2 Ng4 12. Nd1 Bf6 13. c3 Bd7 14. Ne3 O-O-O 15. Nxg4 hxg4 16. Be3 Qc7 17. Qxg4 Rh4 18. Qe2 Rdh8 19. h3 Qd8 20. Nd2 Ne7 21. Nf3 R4h5 22. Bxa6 e5 23. f5 Bc6 24. Bb5 Bxe4 25. Qc4+ Bc6 26. Bxc6 Nxc6 27. Nh2 Qd7 28. Rad1 Bd8 29. b4 Bc7 30. b5 Na5 31. Qd5 Rh4 32. Bf2 Ra4 33. c4 Ra3 34. Bc5 Rxa2 35. Bb4 Rh4 36. c5 Ra4 37. Bxa5 Rxa5 38. c6 Qe8 39. cxb7+ Kb8 40. Qc6 Qxc6 41. bxc6 Rc4 42. f6 1/2-1/2

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