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Harikrishna defeats women's world champion

October 24, 2005 23:17 IST

World junior champion Pendyala Harikrishna put it across women's world champion Antoaneta Stefanova of Bulgaria in the second round of the Crown group of Essent chess tournament in Hoogeveen, the Netherlands.

With his first victory in the event, Harikrishna made sure that he will at least emerge as joint-leader after the second round.

Harikrishna was in his element in a sparkling victory over Stefanova that drew praise from all including his opponent.

The reason was a finely-knitted checkmating web that dawned on Stefanova only when it was just about to happen.

Earlier, playing the black side of a Slav defence, Harikrishna faced a relatively new idea on the 13th move but as things progressed, it was quite clear that Stefanova's plan was not a real improvement on the existing theory.

"I play this position myself as white, so I had some ideas, of course," Harikrishna said after the game.

Stefanova was at her wit's end once the game took a sudden tactical turn, the prima donna ended up losing two rooks for her queen.

"It was not quite clear whether the position was better for me at that point, but black pieces were more active and I was hopeful," said Harikrishna in the post-game analysis.

Stefanova thought she had her chances after another piece sacrifice given the slightly uncomfortable state of black king but Harikrishna had seen a finale that had checkmate written all over the board.

"I missed his return piece sacrifice otherwise the position is unclear," said Stefanova after resigning on her 41st turn.

"It's a nice win and that it has come with black is more satisfying," said Harikrishna, adding tomorrow is a bigger day as it looks Ivan (Sokolov) is winning against Sutovsky."

Meanwhile, in the open section, Candidate for International Master Parimarjan Negi scored over Stephen Giddins of England when the former failed to turn back to board in the middle game and was declared lost on time by the chief arbiter.

Giddins' idiosyncracies were again to the fore when he resigned a playable position in the round three game against American Emory Tate.

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