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Muralidharan wins title, Gouri achieves FIDE rating

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM, MAY 20. M.B. Muralidharan lived up to his seeding by winning the title even as seven-year-old C.M. Gouri Shankar became the youngest FIDE rated player as curtains came down on the Tal Chess Academy FIDE-rating chess tournament for the Hindustan Latex Trophy at the YMCA hall here on Saturday.

Gouri, who needed a point from two rounds, to make the grade won his last two rounds over stronger rivals to push into the background M.B. Muralidharan's title triumph.

The final day's attention garnered around Gouri Shankar and he did not disappoint. Playing against K.A. Unas in the 12th round, Gouri adopted the Sicilian Alapin defence and soon he took initiative from his rival who committed a blunder in the 14th move from which he could never recover. In the next round, Gouri defeated C.R. Ravindran in 41 moves.

Top seed M.B. Muralidharan, who was involved in a neck and neck race for the lead with Joy Antony at the end of the 11th round, breasted ahead as Joy Antony was upset by T.K. Joseph in the 12th round. Muralidharan had little difficulty in beating C.R. Ravindran in the 12th round.

Joy committed a error in the opening and handed over the advantage to T.K. Joseph who was up by two pieces in the middle game. Joseph tightened the noose as he forked his rival's rook and forced him to resign in the 64th move.

B. Jayakumar also achieved the FIDE rating when he defeated V.T. Thomas in the 12th round in a game arising from Kings Indian defence.

The results:

13th round: M.B.Muralidharan 10 drew with B.Jayakumar 6.5; K.Haridas 9.5 drew Ganesh Bhat 6.5; Joy Antony 9 drew with P.V.Girish 8.5; K.R.Madhusudhanan 7.5 drew with Ephrame 5; C.M.Gouri Shankar 6.5 bt C.R.Ravindran 4; K.A.Unas 6.5 bt N.Sugunaraj 3; T.K.Joseph 5.5 bt V.T.Thomas 3.

12th round: M.B.Muralidharan 9.5 bt C.R.Ravindran 4; K.Haridas 9 bt P.V.Girish 8; Joy Antony 8 lost to T.K.Joseph 4.5; K.R.Madhusudhanan 7 bt N.Sugunaraj 3; B.Jayakumar 6 bt V.T.Thomas 3; Ganesh Bhat 6 drew with Ephrame 4.5; C.M.Gouri Shankar bt K.A.Unas 5.5.

Final standings: 1. M.B.Muralidharan 10 pts; 2. K.Haridas 9.5; 3. Joy Antony; 4. P.V.Girish 8.5; 5. K.R.Madhusudhanan 7.5, 6. Ganesh Bhat 6.5.

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