At the 2023 Tata Steel Chess India tournament held in Kolkata, R Praggnanandhaa from India achieved an impressive third-place finish, establishing himself as the leading Indian contender. In the Open Blitz category, world champion Alexander Grischuk exhibited his dominance by securing the top position, while Arjun Erigaisi secured the second-best position among Indian participants, securing fourth place in the Chess tournament.
Praggnanandhaa’s Promising Start
R Praggnanandhaa made a strong start to the tournament, remaining unbeaten in his initial four games. He displayed his exceptional skills in a fine attacking game against Teimour Radjabov, which set the tone for his performance. However, his journey was not without hurdles, as he encountered defeats in crucial matches against Nodirbek Abdusattorov, Alexander Grischuk, and Vidit Gujrathi.
Erigaisi’s Steady Performance
Arjun Erigaisi demonstrated remarkable consistency throughout the tournament, securing fourth place overall with 10 and a half points. He stunned the chess world by defeating Grischuk in the 13th round, marking the only loss for the two-time world blitz champion in the event. Erigaisi’s ability to compete at such a high level solidified his status as one of India’s promising chess talents.
Disappointing Finish for D Gukesh
India’s No. 1 player, D Gukesh, faced a challenging final day with six defeats from nine rounds. His eighth-place finish was a disappointment, but he managed to bounce back with wins over Praggnanandhaa and Vincent Keymer. Gukesh’s quick draw against Pentala Harikrishna in the final round salvaged some pride.
Grischuk’s Dominance and Sole Loss
Alexander Grischuk, the reigning world champion, asserted his supremacy in the tournament by clinching the Open Blitz title. His only loss came as a shock when he was defeated by the rising Indian star, Arjun Erigaisi, in the 13th round. This loss, however, did not deter Grischuk, who continued to impress with his exceptional gameplay.
Abdusattorov’s Tiebreak Victory
Former world Rapid champion Nodirbek Abdusattorov finished the tournament with three points, tying with Praggnanandhaa. Abdusattorov secured a crucial win over Vidit Gujrathi, which allowed him to edge past the Indian sensation on tiebreaks.