Indian Grand Master Harika Dronavalli began her campaign at the Isle of Man International Chess Tournament with an emphatic win over Englishman Oyama Akito in the first round on Saturday.

The world No 10 Indian, playing with white pieces, started with an aggressive approach against her male opponent and made early inroads as the game progressed. However, Oyama tried to stage a fightback before conceding defeat.

“I found myself in a good position from the start of the game and didn’t let the pressure down on my opponent which eventually gave me an easy win,” said Dronavalli. She will now take on the German FIDE Master Babar Michael in the second round. “I have no special preparations for this game and I am looking to take it one at a time,” she said.

The Isle of Man International Chess Tournament features the crème de la crème of the chess fraternity, with the world numero uno, Magnus Carlsen participating alongside India’s reputed Vishwanathan Anand and 159 other players.

Anand notched up an emphatic win over American Marc Esserman. Playing with white pieces, Anand showed much better precision than his opponent to eventually win the game in 46 moves. He will now face Germany’s Lampert Jonas in the second round. Other Indians in fray include SP Sethuraman, Vidit Santosh Gujrathi, Adhiban B and Vaishali R.

The Open tournament is being played at a time control of 100 minutes for 40 moves, followed by 50 minutes for 20 moves, then 15 minutes for the remaining moves with 30 seconds added per move from the start.