Chennai’s Srinath keeps Asian Junior title

Sharjah, April 6 (IANS) International Master Narayanan Srinath retained his Asian Junior title while J. Saranya finished runner-up at the Asian Junior Championship that concluded here Saturday.

Srinath had won the Asian Junior at Tashkent in June 2012 and made his maiden Grand Master norm. He is also a former World Under-12 champion having won it at Belfort, France in 2005. Winning this title again in back-to-back years gives Srinath another Grand Master norm.

Sahaj Grover of Delhi took second. Top seed Grand Master Salem Saleh of the United Arab Emirates (UAE) finished third losing to Srinath and to a Vietnamese. Chennai’s Srinath dominated the contest winning seven games and drawing two.

The girls’ event was dominated by Vo Thi Kim Phung of Vietnam. All the players including the champion suffered at least one defeat. The Vietnamese won this event ahead of top seed Nguyen Thi Mai Hung on seven points from nine games.

Woman FIDE Master Saranya of Chennai finished with the silver medal and had the satisfaction of being the only player to defeat the champion. Saranya gains over 10 Elo and had the highest tie-break on 6.5 points among three players. Defending champion Ivana Furtado of Goa slipped to sixth place.

In the Asian Junior blitz chess, Anurag Mhamal and Grover tied for first on 8/9 and the former became champion on better tie-break score. Phung won the Asian Junior girls blitz championship also.

Final placings:

Boys: 1. N. Srinath (Ind) 8/9; 2. Sahaj Grover (Ind) 7; 3-6. Salem A.R. Saleh (UAE), Anurag Mhamal (Ind), Mehdi Hosseinpour (Iri), Tran Tuan Minh (Vie) 6 each; 7 Debashis Das (Ind) 5.5.

Girls: 1. Vo Thi Kim Phung (Vie) 7/9; 2-4. J Saranya (Ind), Nguyen Thi Mai Hung (Vie), Diana Assaubayeva (Kaz) 6.5 each; 5-6. Sarvinoz Kurbonboeva (Uzb), Ivana Furtado (Ind) 6 each; 7-10. Rucha Pujari, Riya Savant (both Ind), Dorsa Derakhshani (Iri), Farida Khursanova (Uzb) 5.5 each.

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