Former World Champion Viswanathan Anand won a fine game against Fiala Vaclav of Czech Republic and kept himself in contention in the 185000 Pound Sterling prize money tournament. (Latest Chess News)
Taking his tally to four points, Anand is still a full point behind leaders but a couple of victories by the Indian ace in the next rounds should bridge the gap.
On a day when D Harika suffered her first loss in the event at the hands of David Anton Gujjaro of Spain, Padmini Rout continued with her impressive performance and held Grigoriy Oparin of Russia to a creditable draw.
Looking for a Grandmaster norm from this tournament, Padmini took her tally to four points in all to match Harika on points.
Continuing his dream run, Grandmaster Abhijeet Gupta held higher-ranked compatriot P Harikrishna to a draw in the sixth round of the masters section of Tradewise Gibraltar International Chess Festival.
It turned out to be a keenly contested game between two Indians at the top of the tables and Abhijeet was able to match Harikrishna move for move while the latter exerted a lot of pressure.
The Italian opening by Harikrishna gave a slight advantage and Abhijeet decided to go in to a shell when a king side attack looked imminent. Harikrishna put his foot on the gas pedal and kept probing but Abhijeet was relentless and obtained the draw eventually.
Grandmaster Vidit Gujrathi joined the leaders pack defeating Ly Moulthun of Australia in a finely played game with black pieces. Harikrishna, Abhijeet, Gujrathi and seven others share the lead on five points apiece with four rounds to come in one of the strongest open tournament of the world.
Among other Indians in the fray, young and talented Aravindh Chithambaram bounced back after two successive defeats to beat Juam Manual Bellon Lopez of Spain while Surya Shekhar Ganguly continued to struggle as he was held to a draw by Pontus Carlsson of Sweden.
GN Gopal produced the stunner of the day defeating highest ranked Englishman in the fray David Howell. Playing white, Gopal was in his elements in a finely crafted battle. Gopal moved to 4.5 points following his victory to share the 11th spot alongside S P Sethuraman who put it across former women's world champion Antoaneta Stefanova.