Tata Steel Masters 2023: 17-year-old R Praggnanandhaa beats world no. 2 Ding Liren in 74-move-long game
While the position looked equal, the Indian grandmaster was able to find a pawn break to grind the position for a victory.
New Delhi: 17-year-old Rameshbabu Praggnanandhaa is continuing his great run from 2022 as he beat world number 2 Ding Liren at Tata Steel Masters 2023 in the historic venue of Wijk aan Zee. His persistence and ability to take the game deep won him a long game against the world championship contender. Beating a 2800+ grandmaster is no child’s play, but Pragg and other junior Indian GMs have time and again shown that they are not kids anymore.
♟| Watch @rpragchess‘ interview after he beats world no. 2 Ding Liren in the 4th round of the Masters! #TataSteelChess https://t.co/kIAnYqvUlY
— Tata Steel Chess (@tatasteelchess) January 17, 2023
Pragg and Ding began with a Giouco Piano and the game went into a double rook and double knight endgame. While the position looked equal, the Indian grandmaster was able to find a pawn break to grind the position for a victory.
The game began with a symmetrical Italian setup, where they exchanged both pairs of bishops by move 12, while the queens were off the board by move 17. Pragg’s 25…d5 placed four pawns in all four centre squares and 26…exd4 gave him a slight edge. His knight and rook were able to penetrate for an attack, while Ding was the one on defence. He was able to create a passer on h-file, which finally led to his win in the 74-move-long game.
With this win, he stands in the 4th position with 2.5/4 points, and the Chinese grandmaster has slid down to the 9th spot with 2/4 points. Anish Giri, who leads the standings after four rounds, beat world number 1 and his arch-rival Magnus Carlsen to gain the top spot. Giri had superior piece coordination, which enabled an aggressive game for him, while Magnus’ 23…Rxd7 was the nail in the coffin for him.
? Watch the game ?
?: © Jurriaan Hoefsmit – #TataSteelChess Tournament 2023 pic.twitter.com/rAjNx3P6cB
— International Chess Federation (@FIDE_chess) January 17, 2023
Indian GMs Arjun Erigaisi and D Gukesh drew their games with Vincent Keymar and Jorden Van Foreest respectively.