India’s Grandmaster R Praggnanandhaa and Women’s Grandmaster PV Nandidhaa claimed the men’s and women’s titles respectively at the Asian Continental Chess Championship in New Delhi on Thursday.
The win for the 17-year-old GM comes in a year in which he has beaten World Champion Magnus Carlsen three times.
Pragg - as he is commonly known - came up with a 63-move drawn game against compatriot B Adhiban in the ninth and final round of the event to come up with an unassailable seven points. He went into the match with a half-point lead over the rest of the field.
SL Narayanan, Harsha Bharatathakoti, Karthik Venkataraman and Uzbekistan’s Shamsiddin Vokhidov were all in contention of claiming the title but ended their final round matches in draws.
The win gave Pragg a berth at the next FIDE World Cup as well.
In the women’s event, 26-year-old Nandhidhaa needed at least a draw to claim the title. And she drew against Divya Deshmukh to finish on 7.5 points - an entire point ahead of second-placed Priyanka Nautakki.