Indian Grandmaster Nihal Sarin, on Thursday, bagged the Rapid title at the ongoing Tata Steel Chess in Kolkata. The 18-year-old walks away with the title with a round to spare in the tournament.
Going into the eighth and the penultimate round with a lead of 1.5 points, Nihal Sarin defeated Iranian GM Parham Maghsoodloo with the white pieces to ensure that he secures the title with one round of game still left in the tournament.
Earlier in the day, Sarin had defeated Shakhriyar Mamedyarov with the black pieces to set himself nicely for the final two rounds. He is currently unbeaten in the tournament with a score of 6.5/8.
He will face off against fellow Indian and close friend Arjun Erigiasi, who is currently sole second, in the final round match later on Thursday.
Nihal had finished the second day of the event on Wednesday as the sole leader with a score of 4.5 out of 6 matches. He had defeated D Gukesh and SP Sethuraman before drawing with Wesley So.
The Kerala-lad started off his campaign at the Tata Steel Rapid with twin draws against Hikaru Nakamura and the current World Rapid Champion Nodirbek Abdusattorov respectively. He then ended the first day on a high with a win over veteran Indian Vidit Gujrathi with the black pieces.