Mumbai: Grandmaster Vidit Gujrathi has won Tata Steel Chess Challengers 2018, held at Wijk aan Zee, Netherlands from January 12 to 28.
The victory ensured that Vidit qualified for Tata Steel Masters 2019 where best chess players across the world including World Champion Magnus Carlsen would take part, a media release said on Monday.
With a rating of 2718, Vidit started as the first seed. His main competitors were Bassem Amin (2693) from Egypt, Michal Krasenkow (2671) from Poland and Anton Korobov (2654) from Ukraine.
There were also many young talents like World Junior Champion Aryan Tari (2599) from Norway, Jeffery Xiong (2634) from USA and Jorden van Foreest (2629) from the Netherlands.
Vidit played solid chess to score 9.0/13 with five wins and eight draws to remain unbeaten and finish first, the release added.
It was a big fight between Vidit and his Ukrainian opponent Korobov until round 11 when both where tied on 7.5 points. But Vidit scored 1.5 points in the last two rounds, while Korobov could score 0.5/2. Thus the Indian grandmaster won the tournament with one extra point.
Vidit gained 5.3 Elo points from this event and now has his live Elo rating at 2723. This brings him on the 30th spot on the world rankings.
“This victory means a lot to me,” said Vidit, adding “because I qualify for the Masters section in 2019.”
Talking about the next steps in his career, the 23-year-old said, “I want to continue working hard on chess and aim for the World Championship title in the years to come. For this I would need to play more against the best players in the world. I am hoping that this performance will get me invitations to the top Round Robin events in 2018.”