Nakhchivan (Azerbaijan): GM Surya Sekhar Ganguly got off to a flying start in the world junior chess championship, beating Monroy Charles of France in Round I on Sunday.
Most of the Indians in the fray also fared quite well in the first round with three of them — Deepan Chakravorthy, P. Magnesh Chandran and G. Rohit — registering hard-fought wins over their respective opponents.
However, the hero of the day for India was national junior champion Abhijit Gupta who played superbly to hold second seed GM Vugar Gashimov of Azerbaijan to a draw.
Fourth seed GM P. Harikrishna was held to a draw by local boy Sarkhan Gashimov.
The Indian girls had an average beginning as two out of five in the fray registered smooth victories while Canadian Anne Charbonneau held Asian junior girls’ champion Tania Sachdev to a draw.
The loser amongst Indian girls were Saheli Nath, who lost to IWM D. Harika, and Mahima Rajmohan, who was beaten by top seed Nana Dzagnidze of Georgia.
The boys’ championship has just 50 participants this year and there will be 13 rounds in all to determine the winner. (PTI)