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  5. Chess World Cup 2023: R Praggnanandhaa holds World No.2 Fabiano Caruana in first game of semifinal

Chess World Cup 2023: R Praggnanandhaa holds World No.2 Fabiano Caruana in first game of semifinal

Chess World Cup 2023: India's R Praggnanandhaa completed a draw in the first game of the semifinal against Fabiano Caruana. The two players played a 78-move draw.

Written By: India TV Sports Desk New Delhi Updated on: August 20, 2023 12:57 IST
R Praggnanandhaa
Image Source : GETTY R Praggnanandhaa

Chess World Cup 2023: Indian Prodigy R Praggnanandhaa held World No.2 Fabiano Caruana in the first game of the semifinal in the Chess World Cup 2023 on Saturday. Playing with black pieces, Praggnanandhaa settled for a 78-move draw in the clash in Baku, Azerbaijan. The Indian star now has the advantage to clinch the game when the two meet each other on Sunday. 

However, in the other semifinal of the tournament, World No.1 Magnus Carlsen escaped from trouble against Nijat Abasov and took a big step towards the final. On the 34th move, the local boy Abasov overlooked a winning continuation and conceded the game. Carlsen took the game in 43 moves and holds a 1-0 lead in a two-game classical series.

Praggnanandhaa gave a tough fight to the American despite playing being a pawn-less after 41 moves. He was tested by the World No.2 but was accurate and skilful enough to stand the challenge. The two will now play the second game on Sunday with the Indian having white pieces. 

Notably, Praggnanandhaa has become the only Indian after Vishwanathan Anand to qualify for the semifinals of the World Cup. He has also booked his place in the Candidates event in 2024, which will determine the challenger to Ding Liren.  The 18-year-old Praggnanandhaa completed a thrilling win over compatriot Arjun Erigaisi in the quarters in a sudden death tiebreaker. Praggnanandhaa achieved a narrow escape of a 5-4 win in the match. 

Notably in the Women's final, Russia's Aleksandra Goryachkina and Bulgaria's Nurgyul Salimova played a 33-move draw. For third place, Anna Muzychuk of Ukraine took the lead over Tan Zhongyi of China in 52 moves.

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