CHESS

Saina Salonika stuns second seed Nomin; Mendonça leads after hat-trick of Asian Chess Championship wins

Seizing the opportunity, Saina Salonika thwarted second-seeded Nomin-Erdene Davaademberel’s Kingside offense and came within a stroke of taming the Mongol before joining nine other leaders to 2.5 points in three rounds of the section Women’s Asian Chess Championship here.

The Bhubaneswar girl’s 48-stroke triumph stood out even as top seeds Tania Sachdev, Vantika Agrawal, Rakshitta Ravi, Soumya Swaminathan, PV Nandhidhaa and N. Priyanka handed the home majority to the leaders group.

Meanwhile, 15-seeded Leon Mendonca became the only player with a hat-trick in both sections after beating Mongol Tsegmed Batchuluun in 49 shots. This Goan-lad enjoys a half-point lead over 14 players.

-Rakesh Rao

Third-round best results (Indians unless otherwise noted):

Open: Mr. Karthikeyan (2.5) drew with Koustav Chatterjee (2.5); B. Adhiban (2.5) tied with Sandipan Chanda (2.5); Tsegmed Batchuluun (Mgl, 2) lost to Leon Mendonca (3); Maksat Atabayev (Tkm, 2.5) drew with Shyam Sundar (2.5); Pranav Anand (2.5) drew with Raja Rithvik (2.5); R. Praggnanandhaa (2.5) by M. Pranesh (2); SL Narayanan (2.5) against Arystanbek Urazayev (Kaz, 1.5); SP Sethuraman (2) drew with Sumiya Bilguun (Mgl, 2); Rinat Jumabayev (Kaz, 2.5) vs. RR Laxman (1.5); Mitrabha Guha (2) drew with Abhimanyu Puranik (2).
Women: Soumya Swaminathan (2.5) drew with Liya Kurmangaliyeva (Kaz, 2.5); Nguyen Thi Mai Hung (Life, 2.5) tied with Rakshitta Ravi (2.5); Tania Sachdev (2.5) against Kiran Manisha Mohanty (2); Isha Sharma (1.5) lost to Vantika Agrawal (2.5); Nilufar Yakubbaeva (Uzb, 2.5) against Amina Kairbekova (Kaz, 1.5); Srishti Pandey (1.5) lost to Vo Thi Kim Phung (Life, 2.5); Aashna Makhija (1.5) lost to N. Priyanka (2.5); Swati Ghate (1.5) lost to PV Nandhidhaa (2.5); Nomin-Erdene Daademberel (Mgl, 1) lost to Saina Salonika (2); Xeniya Balabayeva (Kaz, 1.5) drew with Padmini Rout (1.5).

Open: Mr. Karthikeyan (2.5) drew with Koustav Chatterjee (2.5); B. Adhiban (2.5) tied with Sandipan Chanda (2.5); Tsegmed Batchuluun (Mgl, 2) lost to Leon Mendonca (3); Maksat Atabayev (Tkm, 2.5) drew with Shyam Sundar (2.5); Pranav Anand (2.5) drew with Raja Rithvik (2.5); R. Praggnanandhaa (2.5) by M. Pranesh (2); SL Narayanan (2.5) against Arystanbek Urazayev (Kaz, 1.5); SP Sethuraman (2) drew with Sumiya Bilguun (Mgl, 2); Rinat Jumabayev (Kaz, 2.5) vs. RR Laxman (1.5); Mitrabha Guha (2) drew with Abhimanyu Puranik (2).
Women: Soumya Swaminathan (2.5) drew with Liya Kurmangaliyeva (Kaz, 2.5); Nguyen Thi Mai Hung (Life, 2.5) tied with Rakshitta Ravi (2.5); Tania Sachdev (2.5) against Kiran Manisha Mohanty (2); Isha Sharma (1.5) lost to Vantika Agrawal (2.5); Nilufar Yakubbaeva (Uzb, 2.5) against Amina Kairbekova (Kaz, 1.5); Srishti Pandey (1.5) lost to Vo Thi Kim Phung (Life, 2.5); Aashna Makhija (1.5) lost to N. Priyanka (2.5); Swati Ghate (1.5) lost to PV Nandhidhaa (2.5); Nomin-Erdene Daademberel (Mgl, 1) lost to Saina Salonika (2); Xeniya Balabayeva (Kaz, 1.5) drew with Padmini Rout (1.5).

TENNIS

Bopanna and Middelkoop lose quarter-finals in Vienna

Rohan Bopanna partnered with Matwe Middelkoop was defeated in the quarter-final doubles 6-2, 6-7(4), [10-8] by Santiago Gonzalez and Andres Molteni at the €2,489,935 ATP tennis tournament in Vienna.

The Indo-Dutch team collected 90 ATP points and €19,470.

In the ITF $60,000 women’s event in Toronto, Karman Kaur Thandi retired through injury in the first set of her pre-quarterfinals against sixth seed Jamie Loeb of the United States.

The results:

€2,489,935 ATP, Vienna, Austria

Doubles (quarter-finals): Santiago Gonzalez (Mex) & Andres Molteni (Arg) bt Matwe Middelkoop (Ned) & Rohan Bopanna 6-2, 6-7(4), [10-8].

$60,000 ITF Women, Toronto, Canada

Singles (pre-quarterfinals): Jamie Loeb (USA) bt Karman Kaur Thandi 5-1 (retired).

$53,120 Challenger, Lima, Peru

Doubles (quarter-finals): Sriram Balaji & Jeevan Nedunchezhiyan v Nikola Milojevic & Miljan Zekic (Srb) 6-4, 6-2.

$25,000 ITF Men, Jakarta, Indonesia

Singles (quarter-finals): Renta Tokuda (Jpn) beats Sidharth Rawat 6-2, 6-2.

$15,000 ITF Men, Al Zahra, Kuwait

Doubles (semi-finals): Bekkhan Atlangeriev & Ivan Denisov v Pruchya Isaro (Tha) & Guhan Rajan 6-1, 7-5.

$15,000 ITF Men, Norman, USA

Singles (pre-quarterfinals): Alex Martinez (Esp) beats Siddhant Banthia 6-4, 6-2.

Doubles (quarter-finals): Yuta Kikuchi (Jpn) & Siddhant Banthia v Kareem Al Altaf (Syr) & Hamish Stewart (GBR) 7-5, 6-3.

$15,000 ITF Women, Monastir, Tunisia

Doubles (quarter-finals): Rikke De Koning & Marente Sijbesma (Ned) v Elisabeth Iila (East) & Saumya Vig 6-1, 6-0; Lola Marandel (Fra) & Shreya Tatavarthy bt Tijana Sretenovic (Srb) & Hanne Vandewinkel (Bel) 0-5 (retired).

-Kamesh Srinivasan

GOLF

Nearly 80 golfers in action in the IGU South Zone Championship

The IGU Synthite-CIAL South Zone Golf Championship begins at CIAL Golf Club, Nedumbassery on Saturday. Nearly 80 golfers will be in action at the Indian Golf Union’s two-day event for juniors and amateurs.

The competitions, for amateurs, will be held in six age groups – 8 and under, 9-10, 11-12, 13-14, 15-17 (all boys and girls) and for men (18 years and older). Grassroot Sports Management partnered with CIAL and Synthite Group to host the event in Ernakulam and 30 golfers from Kerala entered the championship.

-Stan Rayan

Krishnav, Shaurya and Aryan make a cut at the Asia-Pacific Amateur Golf Championship

Two of India’s most talented amateurs, Shaurya Bhattacharya and Aryan Roopa Anand, made a fine comeback to make the cut on day two of the 13th Asia-Pacific Amateur Golf Championship here on Friday.

Another Indian, Krishnav Nikhil Chopraa also made the cut.

Shaurya shot 4 under 68, while Aryan had a 3 under 69 despite a final double bogey, a day which was overcast at the start but ended in hot and humid conditions.

Krishnav, who started the week with a 2 under 70, carded 1 in 73 on day two at Amata Spring Country Club.

Krishnav continued to be the top Indian at T-42 with a total of 1 under while Shaurya (76-68) and Aryan (75-69), evenly tied, were T-47.

The cut fell to 1-over with the top 50 and ties making the cut.

The four absent Indians were Milind Soni (74-72), Rayhan Thomas (74-73), Shat Mishra (73-75) and Arjun Gupta (74-78).

The Chinese Bo Jin (65-69), whose brother Cheng won in 2015, stayed the course to expand the family silverware. He led by a halfway point and was chased head-on by young Thai star Ratchanon Chantananuwat (67-68).

Bo Jin, a junior from Oklahoma State University, closed with a bogey in the ninth, while Chantananuwat, popularly referred to as “TK”, birdied in the sixth and netted the eighth from 66-plus feet for a stunning finish.

Aryan, hoping to make the Nomura Cup team after the withdrawal of Rayhan Thomas, who cannot miss college in the United States, said: “I played very well for 17 holes, but a time lapse led to a brace on the final hole. I was still happy to retire with a 69. Hopefully I can make more ground this weekend. Shaurya, whose coach Rahul Bajaj, a team silver medalist at the 2010 Asian Games, was his caddy, said: “I am proud of the response after the first day 76. Above all, the three birdies from 15th to 17th and the way I held on for the first 13 holes with two birdies and no bogeys. It was great to have my coach, Rahul Sir, on the bag. It helped me.” Krishnav got off to a good start from the tenth with birdies at 15 and 16. After that, many putts didn’t fall and only had one more birdie, but dropped four bogeys for 73.

A year ago, Bo had a similar 36-hole lead but tied for third.

“I’m in a great position and it obviously reminds me of Dubai. I’ve played good golf so far, and I hope to do the same this weekend and finish the job. I don’t think I’ve played badly during the weekend in Dubai, but Keita (Nakajima) played much better and won,” he said.

Korea’s Wooyung Cho is tied for second at 9 under with ‘TK’ after rounds of 68-67. There were four players tied for fourth at 8 under and four more at 7 under and tied for eighth.

Interestingly, the best of the day came from Indonesian Randy Bintang, who followed his first-round 79 with a second-round 66 for a 13-stroke improvement but still missed the cut by one.

Two countries, Kyrgyzstan and Nepal, saw their golfers make the cut for the first time at the AAC. Jantai Malatev (73-69), whose country Kyrgyzstan has just one 9-hole golf course, was tied for 33rd while Subhash Tamang (74-70) became the first player from Nepal to qualify . Malatev plays college golf in the United States.

-PTI