Tata Steel Chess: Nihal & Ushenina Win Tata Steel India Rapid Tournaments
GM Nihal Sarin won the Tata Steel Chess India Open Rapid 2022, while GM Anna Ushenina tied for first & then won the 2022 Tata Steel Chess India Women’s Rapid.
On Thursday, the women’s and open 9-round quick tournaments at the Tata Steel India Chess competition came to a finish.
In the open, Nihal Sarin put on a commanding display, winning consecutive games against Parham Maghsoodloo and Shakhriyar Mamedyarov to take first place with one round remaining.
Anna Ushenina won the women’s title earlier in the day after defeating Nana Dzagnidze in blitz tiebreaks.
The 18-year-old Kerala prodigy Nihal Sarin started the last day of competition in the rapid division of the Tata Steel India competition in first place. The novice led the more skilled Shakhriyar Mamedyarov and his companion Arjun Erigaisi by a whole point.
Importantly, he was matched up against the streaky Shakh in the first match of the day, who had opened the competition with three victories in as many games.
With two rounds remaining, the leader now held a 112-point lead as Nihal defeated his Azerbaijani opponent while the chaser Arjun only was able to win a half-point against Parham Maghsoodloo.
With one round remaining, the rising star was able to secure the overall title with a comfortable victory over Maghsoodloo using the white pieces.
Days before turning 17 in July of last year, Nihal won back-to-back tournaments at the Serbia Chess Open and the Silver Lake Open, propelling him into the world’s top 100 for the first time in his young career.
He is currently ranked number 70 in the most recent FIDE classical chess list, and because of his victory in Kolkata, he also increased his rating rapidly by no less than 27.4 points, moving him up to number 53 in the live ranking.
The way Arjun performed in the fast was also impressive. Arjun, a buddy of Nihal’s, finished the competition with a higher score than any other competitor including the victor.
The 19-year-old also had the opportunity to defeat Hikaru Nakamura & Nihal himself in the competition’s last two rounds.
At this same competition last year, Arjun achieved a significant victory. He joined Vishy Anand as well as Tania Sachdev to discuss his victory after defeating Nihal.