Sharjah: Daneshvar takes down Aravindh, Shankland beats Niemann

by Carlos Alberto Colodro
5/21/2024 – Round 7 of the Sharjah Masters saw former sole leader Aravindh Chithambaram losing his game with white against Iranian GM Bardiya Daneshvar, the 50th seed in the event. Daneshvar thus leapfrogged Aravindh in the standings, as he is now sharing the lead with Sam Shankland. Shankland defeated his compatriot Hans Niemann after the latter misplayed a king and pawn endgame. | Photo: Aditya Sur Roy

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Aravindh misses chance, Niemann blunders

An in-form Aravindh Chithambaram took the sole lead at the Sharjah Masters after beating Saleh Salem in the fifth round. A safe draw with Sam Shankland on Sunday allowed him to remain at the top of the standings, as he was paired up against 17-year-old Iranian GM Bardiya Daneshvar (with white) in the following round. Since the youngster is the lowest-rated player among the contenders for tournament victory, Aravindh perhaps considered this to be a good chance to extend his lead.

The Indian GM — who is in great form and comes from sharing first place in Dubai — indeed got an advantage out of the opening against Daneshvar. A few mistakes in time trouble, however, turned the tables in the Iranian’s favour. More imprecisions by both contenders led to a queen and rook endgame with two pawns per side. Daneshvar was in the driver’s seat, but Aravindh could have tried to defend the position for a while — had he not quickly blundered his rook on move 41.

Thanks to the upset victory, Daneshvar leapfrogged Aravindh in the standings, as he is now sharing first place with Shankland. The latter also won with black on Sunday after his opponent, Hans Niemann, made a one-move blunder in a drawn king and pawn endgame.

Six players stand a half point behind the co-leaders: Arjun Erigaisi, Amin Tabatabaei, Alexey Sarana, Volodar Murzin, Aydin Suleymanli and Aravindh.

In Tuesday’s penultimate round, Daneshvar will play white against Shankland, while Tabatabaei, Sarana, and Murzin will get white in the clash of chasers on boards 2-4.

Volodar Murzin, Pranav V

Volodar Murzin beat Pranav V with black on Monday | Photo: Aditya Sur Roy

Aravindh 0 - 1 Daneshvar

Analysis by Klaus Besenthal

Aravindh Chithambaram

Aravindh Chithambaram | Photo: Aditya Sur Roy

Niemann 0 - 1 Shankland

Analysis by GM Karsten Müller

Sam Shankland

Sam Shankland | Photo: Aditya Sur Roy

Standings after round 7

Rk. Name Pts.  TB1 
1 Daneshvar, Bardiya 5,5 0
2 Shankland, Sam 5,5 0
3 Aravindh, Chithambaram Vr. 5 0
4 Tabatabaei, M. Amin 5 0
5 Sarana, Alexey 5 0
6 Murzin, Volodar 5 0
7 Erigaisi, Arjun 5 0
8 Suleymanli, Aydin 5 0
9 Niemann, Hans Moke 4,5 0
10 Salem, A.R. Saleh 4,5 0
11 Puranik, Abhimanyu 4,5 0
12 Muradli, Mahammad 4,5 0
13 Yu, Yangyi 4,5 0
14 Sankalp, Gupta 4,5 0
15 Maghsoodloo, Parham 4,5 0
16 Zemlyanskii, Ivan 4,5 0
17 Vokhidov, Shamsiddin 4,5 0
18 Nguyen, Thai Dai Van 4,5 0
19 Mendonca, Leon Luke 4,5 0
20 Mishra, Abhimanyu 4,5 0
21 Ter-Sahakyan, Samvel 4 0
22 Maurizzi, Marc`andria 4 0
23 Sindarov, Javokhir 4 0
24 Pranav, V 4 0
25 Blohberger, Felix 4 0

...88 players

All games


Carlos Colodro is a Hispanic Philologist from Bolivia. He works as a freelance translator and writer since 2012. A lot of his work is done in chess-related texts, as the game is one of his biggest interests, along with literature and music.
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