Tania Sachdev wins Indian Women’s Championship

11/18/2007 – She started as third seed, and went through the event without a single defeat – the only player with this record. In the final round WGM Tania Sachdev beat Padmini Rout to win the 34th Women’s National A Chess Championship on tiebreak points, ahead of Kiran Monisha Mohanty and Soumya Swaminathan. With this result all three have qualified for the 2008 Olympic team. Pictorial report.

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34th Women’s National A Chess Championship of India

The Bank of Maharashtra sponsored 34th Women’s National A Chess Championship was organized by Symbiosis Spa Chess School at Symbiosis Center for Health Care Campus, Range Hills Road, Kirkee, Pune. The sponsors’ list also includes State Bank of India, Indian Bank, Union Bank, Syndicate Bank and Pravin Masale. The Technical Assistance was provided by Buddhibal Kreeda Trust.

The tournament, which includes the cream of Indian women’s chess among its participants, offers a record prize money of Rs.250,000 (Euro 4,350 or US $6,400). The top three players from this tournament will be selected to represent India at the World Chess Olympiad to be held at Dresden, Germany in 2008, while the top six players will comprise the Indian women’s team for various other international events.


No problem: Tania Sachdev in her final round game in Pune

In the final round WGM Tania Sachdev of Delhi beat Padmini Rout of Orissa to win the 34th Women’s National A Chess Championship. Tania (tiebreak 66), Kiran Monisha Mohanty (tiebreak 64.5) and Soumya Swaminathan (tiebreak 63.5) scored an identical eight points out of possible 11, but Tania’s better tiebreak score ensured her the title.


Indian Women's Champion 2007: WGM Tania Sachdev, 2413

She was the only player to remain undefeated throughout the tournament, and so her title finish is a very fitting prize. This is her second consecutive National A triumph. Tania, Soumya and Kiran have qualified to the Indian women’s team that will play the Chess Olympiad. Koneru Humpy is directly seeded into the Women’s Olympiad team. Swati Ghate, Dronavalli Harika and Nisha Mohota took places 4 to 6 and made it to the Indian team for other tournaments.


Winners: Tania Sachdev, Kiran Manisha Mohanty and Soumya Swaminathan

The top board game between WIM Soumya Swaminathan of Maharashtra and top seed IM Dronavalli Harika of Andhra Pradesh had a dramatic finish. Harika playing the black side of the Sicilian Najdorf got a comfortable position and soon capitalized on Soumya’s mistakes to win a rook for knight and pawn. Faced with a losing position Soumya tried to complicate matters and Harika made a mistake on move 33. Soumya took advantage by sacrificing her knight in order to give perpetual checks. After that a draw would a logical conclusion but Harika tried to avoid the checks and landed her king in a mating net. Harika and her opponent, who hadn’t realized till then were suddenly shocked to find out that Black is getting mated. Harika offered a draw and Soumya actually gave it a 2-minute thought before noticing that she can give checkmate. After Soumya refused the draw offer, Harika resigned. Both had tears in their eyes only for Soumya they were tears of joy!


Top seed IM Harika Dronavalli, rated 2480

Swaminathan,Soumya (2244) - Dronavalli,Harika (2480)
National Women A Chess Championship 2007 PUNE INDIA (11), 15.11.2007
1.e4 c5 2.Nf3 d6 3.d4 cxd4 4.Nxd4 Nf6 5.Nc3 a6 6.f3 e5 7.Nb3 Be6 8.Be3 h5 9.Qd2 Nbd7 10.a4 Rc8 11.a5 Be7 12.Be2 g6 13.0-0 h4 14.Nd5 Bxd5 15.exd5 Nh5 16.c4 Ng7 17.f4 Nf5 18.Rac1 Nxe3 19.Qxe3 exf4 20.Qxf4 0-0 21.Bg4 Rc7 22.Bxd7 Bg5 23.Qxd6 Rxd7 24.Qb4 Bxc1 25.Rxc1 Re8 26.Qd2 Rde7 27.Nd4 Re4 28.Rf1 Qc7 29.Qf2 R4e7 30.b3 Qxa5 31.Qf6 Qc3 32.Kh1 Qd3 33.Kg1

Now 33...Qe3+ followed by ...h3 should win for Black, but Harika errs: 33...Rd7. Throwing away the win. 34.Nf5 gxf5 35.Qg5+ Kf8 36.Qh6+. White has escaped with a perpetual, but Harika cannot accept this. 36...Ke7? 37.Re1+ Kd8?? 38.Qb6+

Check it out, it is mate in two. 1-0. Soumya Swaminathan’s great run continues as this is the same year she has made five norms (1 IM norm, 1 WGM norm and 3 WIM norms) in Spain in July. She got her second WGM norm here. Kiran Monisha Mohanty also made her maiden WGM norm. Kiran had a dream tournament. Her play was also appreciated by all and mostly free of any dramatic errors.


Third place for WIM Soumya Swaminathan, rated 2244

WIM Kiran Mohanty of Orissa playing the Black side of Sicilian Najdorf against P Priya of Tamil Nadu got an advantage after the queens were exchanged. She soon won a pawn and the game steered towards a rook, bishop and pawns endgame. Kiran positioned her pieces excellently and marched her king into her opponent’s camp to win the opposite colored bishops endgame.


Second place for WIM Kiran Manisha Mohanty, rated 2263


Tenth place for untitled P. Priya, rated 2129

WGM Eesha Karavade also chose the Sicilian Najdorf against city mate WGM Swati Ghate of LIC. Swati maintained a slight advantage right after the opening and eventually struck the decisive blow in the endgame to win the full point and a clear fourth place. IM Dronavalli Harika of Andhra Pradesh finished a clear 5th with 7 points while WGM Nisha Mohota of PSPB beat Mary Ann Gomes to finish clear 6th on 6.5 points.


Fourth: WGM Swathi Ghate, rated 2316

The 11 member strong contingent of Tamil Nadu was disappointed as it turned out to be a very rare instance when none could finish in the Indian team. The absence of Vijayalaxmi and Meenakshi was certainly felt. On the other hand the hosts had something to celebrate as two Puneites made it to the Indian team, Soumya finding a place in the Olympiad team , an icing on the cake.


Once more with feeling: Champion Tania Sachdev

Final Ranking

Rank SNo.   Name Rtg FED Pts BH.
1 3 WGM Tania Sachdev 2413 IND 8 66
2 7 WIM Kiran Manisha Mohanty 2263 IND 8 64½
3 9 WIM Soumya Swaminathan 2244 IND 8 63½
4 6 WGM Swathi Ghate 2316 IND 66
5 1 IM Harika Dronavalli 2480 IND 7 68
6 2 WGM Mohota Nisha 2416 IND 64½
7 4 WGM Karavade Eesha 2331 IND 6 68
8 11 WFM Meera Sai 2205 IND 6 62½
9 5 WGM Ramaswamy Aarthie 2317 IND 6 62
10 15   Priya P 2129 IND 6 61½
11 12   Nimmy A G 2196 IND 6 59½
12 14 WFM Pon N Krithika 2140 IND 6 58½
13 10   Padmini Rout 2226 IND 6 55
14 8 WIM Gomes Mary Ann 2262 IND 66
15 25   Divyasri Ch 2050 IND 52½
16 18   Swati Mohota 2112 IND 49½
17 16   Preethi R 2125 IND 47½
18 27   Athirai S 2000 IND 45
19 13   Amrutha Mokal 2159 IND 5 58½
20 17   Sangeetha M R 2118 IND 5 52½
21 22   Anuprita Patil 2060 IND 56½
22 23   Harini S 2060 IND 54½
23 24   Uthra P 2055 IND 49
24 20   Syed Nabeela Farheen 2093 IND 4 56½
25 21 WFM Pujari Rucha 2061 IND 4 54½
26 26 WFM Dave Dhyani 2002 IND 4 49
27 28   Savetha C H 1968 IND 3 46½
28 19   Baisakhi Das 2101 IND 1 41

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