Kolkata, Aug 31:
WGM Padmini Rout of Odisha today joined overnight leaders Mary Ann Gomes, Soumya Swaminathan, Swati Ghate for a four-way lead after fifth round of the 40th National Women Premier Chess Championship here on Friday.
Playing black, Padmini secured a fine win against the talented Bodda Pratyusha of Andhra Pradesh to collect a full point, while overnight leaders Mary Ann, Soumya and Swati settled for draws that enabled the Odisha girl join the trio in the lead with 3.5 points apiece.
Local favourite Mary Ann, playing black, opted for the King’s Indian set up against Bhakti Kulkarni of Goa but only split the point.
In a battle between two overnight leaders, Swati blundered a pawn early in the opening against Soumya but the latter failed to take any advantage of her opponent’s largesse as the game frittered away to a draw after 53 moves in a rook and opposite bishop ending.
Top seed Tania Sachdev, who had suffered consecutive defeats, finally returned to winning ways scripting a comfortable victory against the bottom-ranked Michelle Catherina.
Tania won a couple of pawns in the middle game and then converted her extra material into a win in 42 moves.
Nisha Mohta too won her game after successive defeats as the city girl secured a fine win against Kiran Manisha Mohanty with the black pieces in a Ruy Lopez opening.
Results (Round 5)
WGM Soumya Swaminathan (PSPB) (3.5) drew WGM Swati Ghate (LIC) (3.5); IM Tania Sachdev (AI) (2.5) bt Michelle Catherina (TN) (0.5); WFM G K Monnisha (TN) (1.5) drew WIM Ivana Maria Furtado (Goa) (2.5); CM Bhakti Kulkarni (Goa) (2.5) drew WGM Mary Ann Gomes (WB) (3.5); WGM Kiran Manisha Mohanty (LIC) (2)
Lost to IM Nisha Mohta (PSPB) (2); Bodda Pratyusha (AP) (2.5) lost to WGM Padmini Rout (Odisha) (3.5). (PTI)