Senior national chess: Arjun Erigaisi beats Pranav; enjoy sole lead

Kanpur, Mar 1: Grandmaster Arjun Erigasi defeated IM V Pranav to jump into sole lead with 7.5 points after nine rounds in the ongoing MPL 58th Senior National Chess Championship here on Tuesday.

The in-form Erigaisi outlasted the Tamil Nadu player in a 60-move game to take the lead while others, who were in joint lead till the eighth round including GMs D Gukesh, defending champion Aravindh Chithambaram and P Iniyan, had to settle for draws and fell behind by half-a-point.

In other ninth round matches, Gukesh was held to a draw by Iniyan and Chithambaram had to sign peace with Swapnil S Dhopade.

Another GM Aryan Chopra beat Aditya Mittal to take his tally to seven points along with Gukesh and Chithambaram.

Earlier in the eighth round, Tamil Nadu Grandmaster Iniyan outwitted top seed B Adhiban while International Master Pranav shocked seasoned Grandmaster Deep Sengupta and Chithambaram beat Railwayman Sayantan Das.

Important Results after ninth round: Arjun Erigaisi (Telangana) (7.5) beat V Pranav (6.5); D Gukesh (7) drew with P Iniyan (7); Swapnil S Dhopade (6.5) drew with Aravindh Chithambaram (7); Abhijeet Gupta (6.5) drew M R Lalith Babu (PSPB) (6.5); Aryan Chopra (7) beat Aditya Mittal (6); N R Vishakh (6.5) drew with Mitrabha Guha (6.5); B Adhiban (6) drew P Shyam Nikhil (6); S P Sethuraman (6.5) beat R R Laxman (5.5).

Eighth round: Arjun Erigaisi drew with N R Visakh; Lalith Babu drew with Gukesh; Iniyan beat Adhiban; Aravindh Chithambaram beat Sayantan Das; Mitrabha Guha drew with Aryan Chopra; Deep Sengupta (PSPB) lost to Pranav.

Seventh round: Aryan Chopra drew with Arjun Erigaisi; Gukesh drew with Aravindh Chithambaram; Iniyan drew with Lalith Babu; Abhijeet Gupta drew with Mitrabha Guha; Adhiban beat Neelash Saha; Mohammad Nubairshah Shaikh lost to Deep Sengupta; Visakh beat Utsab Chatterjee; Sayantan Dad beat Harsha Bharathakoti; R R Laxman drew with Adiyta Mittal; Pranav beat Anustoop Biswas; Sambit Panda drew with Koustav Chatterjee. (PTI)