India’s challenge ended in the Aimchess Rapid online chess tournament with the trio of D Gukesh, Arjun Erigaisi and Vidit Santosh Gujrathi falling in the quarterfinals.
Gukesh, who had beaten world champion Magnus Carlsen during the preliminary phase, fell 1.5-2.5 to Richard Rapport after taking the lead with a victory in the second game of the four-game competition. The 16-year-old Indian seemed to have gained the upper hand as he took a 1.5-0.5 lead with a 32-move win in the second game after the first ended in a deadlock. Rapport, who is highly rated, showed his skills by winning the third game in 55 moves and then defeated his opponent in a marathon fourth game to end Gukesh’s hopes.
Erigaisi, who had also beaten Carlsen in the preliminary round, was outscored by the world number one Norwegian by 0.5 to 2.5.
After eking out a draw from an almost hopeless position in the first game, Carlsen underscored his superiority to win the next two and advance to the final four rounds.
Gujrathi was outclassed by Jan-Krzystof Duda of Poland, losing 0.5-2.5 without much of a fight. Gukesh and Erigaisi had finished second and fourth respectively in the preliminary phase. The Aimchess Rapid tournament is part of the Meltwater Champions tour and features 16 players, including five from India.