Chess Olympiad: Indians raring to go
India will field a third team in the Open section of the 44th Chess Olympiad to be held at Mamallapuram near here from July 28 to August 10, the All India Chess Federation (AICF) said on Sunday.
With a record number of 187 teams registering for the Open section and to even out the number of entries as per norm, Fide (world chess federation) approved a third team from the host country.
The Indian ‘A’ team will start as the third seeds in the Open section and the ‘B’ team will be the 11th seeds. In the women’s event, the India ‘A’ team including Koneru Humpy and D Harika, will be the top seeds, while the ‘B’ team will be seeded 12th.
Grandmasters Surya Shkhar Ganguly, Karthikeyan Murali, SP Sethuraman, Abhijeet Gupta and Abhimanyu Puranik would form part of the third Indian team which received a last-minute entry with Gujarat’s first GM, Tejas Bakre as the captain, an AICF release said.
The India ‘A’ team comprises Vidit Gujrathi, P Harikrishna, Arjun Erigaisi, SL Narayanan, K Sasikiran and have an average rating of 2696. The ‘B’ team (average rating 2649) includes Nihal Sarin, D Gukesh, B Adhiban, R Praggnanandhaa and Raunak Sadhwani.
Ganguly, a six-time national champion, was Viswanathan Anand’s second in four World Championships. “Nothing could be more exciting or thrilling than to be playing in an Olympiad again.. and for the first time in your own country,” he said.