Bonelli shares lead at Dubai Open Chess Championship - GulfToday

Bonelli shares lead at Dubai Open Chess Championship

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Yuriy Kuzubov of Ukraine (left) ponders a move against Maxim Matlakov during the seventh round of the Dubai Open. Supplied photo

Former Dubai Open champion Eduardo Iturrizaga Bonelli of Venezuela climbed to a share of the lead with three others after completion of seven rounds of the 21st Dubai Open Chess Championship at the Dubai Chess Club on Sunday.

The Venezuelan has 6 points together with GMs Maxim Matlakov of Russia, Indjic Aleksandar of Serbia and Yurity Kuzubov of Ukraine in the race for the top prize of $13,000.

Bonelli used the Caro Kann Defense against GM SP Sethuraman of India and uncorked a brilliant Rook sacrifice on the 39th move to force resignation two moves later.

Bonelli, a four-time Venezuelan champion, is the first in his country to achieve the Grandmaster title. He won the Dubai Open in 2010.

Kuzubov played the Queen’s Gambit Declined to draw with Matlakov in 36 moves. Indjic drew with GM Amin Tabatabaei of Iran in 39 moves of a Rook and pawn endgame.

Tabatabaei and six others are within striking distance at 5.5 points each in the fight for $50,000 in cash prizes, namely Indians Deepan Chakkravarthy, Debashis Das and P. Iniyan, GMs Adly Ahmed of Egypt,  Emre Can of Turkey and Nodirbek Abdusattorov of Uzbekistan.

Five Indians are tied with eight others at 5 points each with two rounds remaining, namely GM Aravindh Chithambaram and IMs Sadhwani Raunak, Visakh N R, Vignesh N R and untitled Raahul V S, and top seed Le Quang Liem and Nguyen Anh Khoi of Vietnam, Alan Pichot of Argentina, Mchedlishvili Mikheil of Georgia,  Ghaem Maghami Ehsan of Iran, Sanal Vahap and Yilmaz Mustafa of Turkey and Yeoh Li Tian of Malaysia.

At stake is the Sheikh Rashid Bin Hamdan Al Maktoum Cup.