Calcutta: WGM Mary Ann Gomes successfully defended her national title as she was crowned the champion of the UBI 40th Women’s National Premier Chess Championship, organised by the Dibyendu Barua Chess Academy and Allsport Management, here, at the Spring Club, on Thursday.
That this was Mary Ann’s hat-trick of national titles speaks volumes about the city girl’s stupendous consistency.
Along with Mary Ann, top seed Tania Sachdev and Soumya Swaminathan too were tied on 7.5 points. But a better tie-breaking score helped Mary Ann edge past her rivals.
With this achievement, Mary Ann joins Rohini Khadilkar, who had earlier won the competition three times in succession in 1976, 1977 and 1979 (No championship was held in 1978).
S. Vijaylaxmi, though, boasts of an even better record of winning the title five times in a row, from 1998 to 2002.
Mary Ann bagged a cash prize of Rs 1.75 lakh, the second-placed Tania got Rs 1 lakh, while overnight leader Soumya, losing to Padmini Rout in the final round, had to be content with the third prize of Rs 80,000.