Saturday, 6 April 2013

2013 Sydney International Open - Day 4

The end of the 4th day of the Sydney International Open saw a number of players earn title norms, even before the final round has been played. FM Bobby Cheng defeated Indian IM GA Stany in round 8, and a kind/nightmare pairing against top seed GM Li Chao in the final round lifts his PR over 2450, even if he loses the game. As this is Cheng's third IM norm, and his rating is over 2400, turning up tomorrow is enough to earn his title. Anton Smirnov has earned his 1st IM norm after beating GM Laxman in this evenings round. Tomorrows pairing against GM Czebe is enough to lift his PR over 2450, even with a loss. The third norm has been achieved by Tingjie Lie, who has the WGM norm in the bag, but a draw against GM Herberla should be enough for an IM norm as well.
Going into the last round GM Loek Van Wely leads by half a point after defeating GM Li Chao in round 8. SP Sethuraman, Adam Horvath and Jiri Stocek are all tied for second along with Chao. Van Wely is black against Sethuraman, Stocek plays Horvath while Chao battles Cheng in the final round.
In the Challengers Arif Hassani added some excitement to the tournament after beating run away leader Joseph Nguyen in round 8. Nguyen still leads by half a point over Hassani, but Nguyen now needs at least a draw to secure first place.

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