Julius Baer Cup: Arjun Erigaisi on top, R Praggnanandhaa in 2nd spot | Chess News

NEW YORK: India’s teenage grandmaster Arjun Erigaisi jumped to first place with 17 points after eight rounds, while his compatriot R Praggnanandhaa is in second place with 15 points Julius Baer Cup here.
The long-awaited Praggnanandhaa-Magnus Carlsen clash in the eighth round ended in a draw. The Indian had beaten the Norwegian ace twice earlier this season in online matches.
After the conclusion of the second day of preliminary matches early Tuesday, Erigaisi is two points ahead of Praggnanandhaa and world champion Carlsen (15 points).
Erigaisi started the day with a victory over Hans Niemann (USA) and then beat Levon Aronian.
The all-India clash between Erigaisi and Praggnanandhaa ended in a 67-stroke draw. Later in the eighth round, the last of the day, he shared honors with Ivan Saric of Croatia.
Praggnanandhaa started the day with a draw against Radoslaw Wojtaszek in the fifth round before taming the highly rated German Vincent Keymer in the next match.
The 17 year old Indian chess star then held Carlsen to a draw in 67 moves.
Meanwhile, Carlsen quit his match against Niemann after just two hits. The world champion entered the sixth-round encounter after a loss to the 19-year-old American at the Sinquefield Cup in St Louis, after which he accused his opponent of cheating and withdrew from the tournament.
Carlsen then picked up a victory over Aronian in the seventh round before sharing the honors with Praggnanandhaa.
Baskaran Adhiban, the third Indian in the fray, languishes in last place in the 16-man event with three points. He faces Praggnanandhaa in the ninth round.
Ukrainian veteran Vasyl Ivanchuk continued to impress and sits in fourth place with 13 points.
The 53-year-old didn’t have a profitable time on day two like he did on opening day but managed to end it with a win over Keymer. He had lost in the previous two rounds to American teenager Christopher Yoo and Poland’s Wojtaszek.
Once the preliminary rounds are completed, the tournament will move on to the round of 16 before a two-day final. The eight-day event will run until September 25 and will feature 16 players across three generations.

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