Match of the talents

| 0 | Chess Event Coverage
Who's the biggest chess talent these days? It's probably a choice between just two players: Parimarjan Negi (2538) from India (playing in Corus group C next month) and Kateryna Lahno (2459) from the Ukraine. Lahno is the world's youngest female grandmaster and the reigning European Women's Champion, Negi is the world's youngest grandmaster. He's studying at the Amity International School in New Delhi, the organisers of a lengthy match (including regular games, rapid and blitz) between Negi and Lahno this week. So far it's a close call: three draws and a win for Lahno. Negi could probably have won today.

During the first three games, Lahno was the better player. She beat Negi with Black in the second one:

Negi-Lahno (02) New Delhi 2006

Lahno had surprised Negi (and his trainer, the Ukrainian GM Alexander Goloshchapov) by playing the Arkhengelsk variation of the Closed Ruy Lopez. At first White reacted well, but then he went astray. Instead of 19.Qc4?! I would prefer 19.Nc2 because 19...Bxd4 isn't that terrible: 20.Nxd4 cxd4 21.Bc2 Rxb2 22.cxd4 and White is better.

Today Negi seemed to be going to level the score, but then he couldn't make progress in an ending with a pawn up.

Negi-Lahno (04) New Delhi 2006

Black has just played 41...Nb5. White went 42.c4 but why not 42.Bxb5 cxb5 43.g4, which gives some winning chances.

After the sixth games, the players will turn to rapid chess (three games on Saturday and three on Sunday), and on Monday (Christmas!) six blitz games will be played. The price fund is 500,000 rupees (about 7300 euros) of which 300,000 will go to the winner and 200,000 to the loser. Not bad these days, being a talent!

>> replay games 1-4
Peter Doggers

Peter Doggers joined a chess club a month before turning 15 and still plays for it. He used to be an active tournament player and holds two IM norms.

Peter has a Master of Arts degree in Dutch Language & Literature. He briefly worked at New in Chess, then as a Dutch teacher and then in a project for improving safety and security in Amsterdam schools.

Between 2007 and 2013 Peter was running ChessVibes, a major source for chess news and videos acquired by in October 2013.

As our Director News & Events, Peter writes many of our news reports. In the summer of 2022, The Guardian’s Leonard Barden described him as “widely regarded as the world’s best chess journalist.”

In October, Peter's first book The Chess Revolution will be published!

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