Young Indian Grandmaster Sahaj Grover came up with a fine show to beat higher ranked Krzysztof Jakubowski of Poland and then drew with Axel Bachmann of Paraguay to jump to joint third spot after the end of the fourth round of 31st Cappelle-La-Grande International chess tournament today.
On a double round day, Grover excelled with black pieces against Jakubowski and scored a crushing victory and then in the fourth round played an easy draw with Bachmann to take his tally to 3.5 points out of a possible four.
Igor Kovalenko of Latvia and Vladimir Onischuk of Ukraine emerged as the early leaders in the nine-round tournament with a perfect score. Kovalenko beat Alexander Kovchan of Ukraine while Federico Perez Ponsa of Argentina was no match for Onischuk.
With two leaders in front, Grover is now joint third with Kamil Dragun of Poland, Erwin L’Ami of Holland, Renier Cazquez Igarza of Spain and Bachmann. In the next round, the Indian is pitted against Konstantin Landa of Russia.
Higher ranked Indians Abhijeet Gupta and Vidit Gujrathi also had a decent outing on the double round day. Gupta was held to a draw by Swede Axel Smith in the third round but made amends by winning the fourth against Jose Rafael Sequera Paolini of Venezuela while Vidit Gujrathi also had a similar result—a draw with Meelis Kanep of Estonia followed by a fine attacking victory over compatriot Grandmaster V Vishnu Prasanna.
Gupta, Gujrathi, Sandipan Chanda and S Arun Prasad are among a big pack of players having three points each. Chanda got two draws on the double round day with Dennis Wagner of Germany and Chinese Gao Rui and Arun Prasad won both his games against lower ranked opposition to come back in reckoning.
Among other Indians, G N Gopal and S Kidambi have 2.5 points each while M R Venkatesh is now on two points from his four outings.