Jamshedpur: Grandmaster Dibyendu Barua shot into sole lead with an emphatic victory over GM P. Harikrishna in the sixth round of the Tata International Open chess tournament at the JRD Tata Sports Complex on Thursday.
As other results of the day poured in, Barua left his 10 nearest rivals a full point behind.
Harikrishna, top seed GM Dmitry Svetushkin of Moldova, GM Sergei Ovsejevitsch of the Ukraine, GM Alexander Fominyh of Russia, GM Marat Dzhumaev of Uzbekistan, GM Ziaur Rahman of Bangladesh, IM Tahir Vakhidov of Uzbekistan and Indian IMs Sunderrajan Kidambi, V. Saravanan and GM-in-waiting R.B. Ramesh had five points each behind Barua on six.
Harikrishna was simply overawed by Barua’s simple technical play in a Sicilian defence game where the latter played white.
The middle game looked good for Barua after Harikrishna made a positional mistake and was gradually grinded effectively without any counterplay.
The second board game between Svetushkin and Ovsejevitsch was a long-drawn battle that ended in a stalemate after both sides tried hard while it was a short draw on the third board between Ramesh and Fominyh who both appeared tired having played a long game in the morning session.
Earlier, after the conclusion of the fifth round both Barua and Harikrishna had emerged as joint leaders after beating Ziaur Rahman and Saidali Iuldashev, respectively.
Of the two, Harikrishna was more impressive as he outplayed the former Asian No. 2 in all departments of the game. It was an English opening where Iuldashev conceded the bishop pair at the start, a passed pawn in the middlegame and the game itself in the ensuing ending.
Barua had to use a lot of time on his clock but he maintained a definite advantage against Rahman till such time the latter crumbled under pressure to lose a piece.
Earlier in the fourth round, Harikrishna gave an emphatic endgame display to outwit M. R. Venkatesh while Barua carved out yet another win against Suvrajit Saha. As many as five grandmas ters - including Harikrishna and Barua - were joint leaders with four points. (PTI)