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Harikrishna held by Berkes

August 08, 2007 15:13 IST

Former World Junior champion P Harikrishna tried every trick in the book but could not get the better of Ferenc Berkes' defence and split point with the Hungarian in the third round of the 5th Marx Gyorgy Memorial International chess tournament in Paks, Hungary.

Slowly inching up after a disastrous first round loss, Harikrishna is now on one point and is in joint fifth spot along with Hou Yifan.

On another exciting day in the category-14 double round robin event, veteran Viktor Korchnoi was comprehensively beaten by Csaba Balogh of Hungary while Chinese sensation Yifan went down fighting against another Hungarian Peter Acs.

With seven rounds still to come, Balogh and Acs, who had beaten Harikrishna on the opening day, share the lead on two points from three games while Berkes and Korchnoi are joint third on 1.5 points each.

In the Paks Cup GM tournament, organised simultaneously, national champion Tania Sachdev finally opened her account with a draw with Mihai Grunberg of Hungary. After two straight losses, Tania set herself on the recovery path with black pieces in the Queen's Indian defence and played out a solid game to hold her higher ranked opponent.

Harikrishna had some chances against Berkes who employed the Grunfeld defence with his black pieces but did not quite feel at home. Harikrishna had a spatial advantage in the middle game but a timely breakthrough by Berkes led to an endgame where again Harikrishna was better but not without the complications.

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