Nicosia GP: Tan and Lagno share the lead

by Carlos Alberto Colodro
5/19/2023 – Kateryna Lagno and Tan Zhongyi are sharing the lead with 2½ points each after three rounds at the Women’s Grand Prix in Nicosia, the final stage of the series. The co-leaders kicked off the event with back-to-back wins and then drew their direct encounter on Thursday. Three players stand a half point back: Harika Dronavalli, Polina Shuvalova and Dinara Wagner. | Photo: FIDE / Mark Livshitz

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Lagno frontrunner in the GP standings

Going into the fourth and final stage of the Nicosia Grand Prix, three players had the best chances to get the two spots awarded by the series for the next edition of the Women’s Candidates Tournament: Aleksandra Goryachkina, Alexandra Kosteniuk and Kateryna Lagno, in that order. After three rounds, Lagno has become the frontrunner, as she has scored two wins and a draw, and is sharing the lead with Tan Zhongyi.

Goryachkina has collected 1½ points, while Kosteniuk stands on a minus-one score with 1 point to her name. In round 3, Kosteniuk played white against Goryachkina, and managed to escape with a draw after defending an asymmetrical, inferior position.

While Lagno beat Polina Shuvalova and Gunay Mamamdzada in the first two rounds, Tan Zhongyi defeated Kosteniuk and Oliwia Kiolbasa before safely drawing Lagno with black in round 3.

Three players stand a half point behind the leaders: Harika Dronavalli, Polina Shuvalova and Dinara Wagner. Shuvalova lost her first game in Nicosia, but bounced back with two consecutive wins, over Bibisara Assaubayeva and Mammadzada respectively.

Fighting chess has been the rule in the Cypriot capital.

Tan Zhongyi

Tan Zhongyi | Photo: FIDE / Mark Livshitz

Assaubayeva 0 - 1 Shuvalova

Analysis by Klaus Besenthal

Polina Shuvalova

Polina Shuvalova during the third round | Photo: FIDE / Mark Livshitz

Kosteniuk 0 - 1 Tan

Endgame analysis by Karsten Müller

Alexandra Kosteniuk

After losing to Tan Zhongyi, Alexandra Kosteniuk drew Bella Khotenashvili in round 2 | Photo: FIDE / Mark Livshitz

Results - Round 3

Standings - Round 3

All games

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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.