Koneru Humpy finishes second, Harika Dronavalli third as Ju Wenjun takes Tata Steel Chess India Blitz title

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Koneru Humpy in between a match earlier this year.

Ju Wenjun won the 2023 Tata Steel Chess India Blitz crown on Monday, September 4, with a score of 12.5/18. She managed to beat the Indian duo of Koneru Humpy and Harika Dronavalli, who finished second and third respectively.

Koneru Humpy had to settle for second place despite winning her last round against recently crowned blitz champion Divya Deshmukh. Humpy scored 12 points, just half a point behind the world champion Ju Wenjun.

Harika Dronavalli, who was in joint lead with Wenjun at the beginning of the final day, finished third, with a score of 10.5/18. She managed to secure only three draws in the final six rounds, squandering the two-point lead that she had over the rest of the field, with a score of 9/12.

Humpy and Dronavalli stayed in the hunt for a long time but eventually faltered. Humpy drew her penultimate game against Ukraine’s Anna Ushenina, which proved to be costly, while Dronavalli suffered a shock defeat to Vantika Agrawal, which pushed her out of running for the title. Divya Deshmukh, who won the rapid title earlier, finished fourth with a score of 10.5.

Ju Wenjun beat Anna Ushenina in the final round, which gave her the blitz title at the 2023 Tata Steel Chess India tournament, held in Kolkata. The 32-year-old from China, who has been the World champion since 2018, won five of her last six games to grab the top spot.

Upcoming at Tata Steel Chess India

The 2023 Tata Steel Chess India's Rapid and Blitz are two of India's most prestigious chess events. With the women's tournament completed, the men's competition or The Open began on Tuesday, September 6.

In the tournament, competitors play a 10-player round-robin in three days of rapid games with a 25+10 time control, which is followed by two days of blitz games that are played with a 3+2 time control.

World Cup finalist R. Praggnanandhaa and recently crowned India No.1 Gukesh D would be in focus while Nihal Sarin, who won the blitz title last year, would be missing the tournament.

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