Mumbai:Indian Grand Master Abhijeet Gupta, seeded fifth, shared the lead with two overseas players at the end of the fifth round in the eleven-round Rs 12-lakh prize money Mayor's Cup International Chess tournament on Monday.
Gupta, having an ELO rating of 2570, defeated compatriot and International Master K Ratnakaran, ranked over 100 places below him, in only 32 moves to notch up his fifth straight win for as many points in the event being held at the suburban Goregaon Sports Club here.
Sharing the lead with Gupta with five points to their credit were second-seeded Ukrainian GM Alexander Aveshchenko, with a rating of 2657, and Russian GM Andreu Deviatkin (rating 2566), who too recorded their fifth successive wins.
The Ukrainian player outclassed Indian GM Deepan Chakravarty while Deviatkin got the better of host country's Woman Grand Master Meenakshi Subbaraman in the fifth round.
Top seed Evgenij Miroshnichenko of Ukraine, who dropped half a point in the fourth round, and fourth-seeded GM Koneru Humpy, held to a draw today by Indian compatriot and fellow GM Tejas Bakre, were sniffing at the leaders' heels half a point behind at the end of round five.
In an upset, IM Himanshu Sharma (rating 2406) outplayed GM Georgy Timoshenko (rating 2550) of Ukraine in an interesting rook and pawn ending.
Sharma was successful in promoting his 'h' file pawn to the eighth rank. In a queen vs rook end game, he showed good technical grasp and forced Timoshenko to acknowledge defeat on the 75th move.
After round five, Sharma too was half a step behind the leading trio.
GM Chakravarty (rating 2482) opened his top board clash against GM Areshchenko with king pawn to which his rival replied with the Sicilian defence's Najdorf variation.
Areshchenko sacrificed a pawn on the 13th move and later forced an exchange of the queens and the remaining rook and knight to simplify the game in a clear king and pawn ending before Chakravarty called it quits.
On the second board, Humpy (rating 2612) played with black pieces against Bakre (rating 2452).
The two players were left with a rook and knight each, among major pieces, after the 26th move and then exchanged the rooks too on the 37th before signing the peace treaty 18 moves later.