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Barua emerges joint leader

Mumbai: Grandmasters Dibyendu Barua of India, Zhang Peng Xiang of China and Nguyen Anh-dung of Vietnam scored comprehensive wins with black pieces to share the lead with 4.5 points each after the fifth round of the Commonwealth chess championship here Wednesday.

Tenth seed Barua defeated compatriot International Master R.B. Ramesh in a French-Tarrasch game, outwitting his opponent in 42 moves while 14th seed Dung caused a mild flutter, beating the seventh seeded Russian GM Sherbakov Ruslan in a Nimzo Indian game. Dung overpowered his rival in 37 moves.

Eighth seed Xiang demolished young Indian International Master Neelotpal Das (3.5 points) in a Sicilian-Paulsen game in just 27 moves.

The top two seeds GMs Rustom Kasimzhanov of Uzbekistan and K. Sasikiran of India drew their fifth round matches against Indian GM Abhijit Kunte and Sukhrat Safin of Uzbekistan, respectively, to share the joint second spot with four points each.

International Master Tejas Bakre (2) was shocked by compatriot Akshayraj Kore (3) while another Indian GM Pentalya Harikrishna (2.5) suffered his second defeat in the championship when he lost to countryman N. Sudhakar Babu (3.5).

GM Koneru Humpy (2.5) managed to score full points, after successive reversals, when she defeated K. Lakshmi Praneetha of India while veteran Indian GM Pravin Thipsay (3) beat IWM Nisha Mohota.

Results, Round V

Dibyendu Barua (4.5) bt r.b. ramesh (3.5); Zhang Peng Xiang (4.5) bt Neelotpal Das (3.5); Nguyen Anh Dung (4.5) bt Sherbakov Ruslan (3.5); Rustom Kasimzhanov (4) drew with Abhijit Kunte (3.5); K. Sasikiran (4) drew with Sukhrat Safin (3.5); Tejas Bakre (2) lost to Akshayraj Kore (3); P. Harikrishna (2.5) lost to N. Sudhakar Babu (3.5); Koneru Humpy (2.5) bt K. Lakshmi Praneetha (0); Pravin Thipsay (2.5) bt Nisha Mohota (1.5); Ghaem Meghami (4) drew with Evgeny Valdimirov (4)

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