The Hatsun – Idhayam 2nd SCS Fide Rated chess tournament, organised by Sivakasi Chess Sparklers received 527 entries, its a record for Open rated tournaments. The tournament offering a total prize of Rs.4,50,000/- (Rs. four lakh fifty thousand only) attracted grandmaster RR Laxman of ICF and five international masters. The nine round Swiss tournament had a time control of 90 minutes + 30 seconds increment for each players. Players hailed mainly from Tamil Nadu, apart from all South Indian states Karnataka, Kerala, A.P., Puducherry and Telangana.
Earlier rounds did not produce any hiccups, except the draw between former World Under 16 Olympiad gold medallist GiremanJa of Coimbatore and Kamalanathan of Tamil Nadu in the third round. IM VAV Rajesh of Chennai had to split the point with his city mate Prasanth N Nayagam in the fourth round. Former state champion Navalgund Niranjan was also subdued by young LR Sri Hari in the same round. International Arbiter S. Ganesh Babu of Madurai held the top seed GM Laxman in fifth round, paving way for nine players, including four international Masters and a FIDE Master to share the lead with five points each.
Of the top six boards, only P. Saravana Krishnan of Karur Vysya Bank defeated IM R. Balasubramanian of ICF to emerge sole leader with six points and nine players trailed the leader by half a point. Saravana continued his winning spree with a win over IM S Nitin of Southern Railways to make it seven wins in a row. IM BT Muralikrishnan of Southern Railways, FM P. Maheswaran of Indian Posts, Ram S Krishnan of BSNL were closely behind him. At the end of the eighth round, Saravana managed to cling on to the lead with a draw against BT Murali Krishnan and the second board game between Ram and Maheswaran also ended without any decisive result. GM RR Laxman, Manu David Suthandram and N Lokesh, both from Tamil Nadu joined the players on second spot with wins over IM RamnathBhuvanesh and B Sekar respectively.
At the advent of ninth round, seven players on top four boards had chances to win the title. Ram S Krishnan shocked RR Laxman and Saravana Krishnan drew with Lokesh to tie for the first place with 8 points each. When tiebreaks were applied, Saravana Krishnan had a better score to clinch the title in his favour and Ram secured second place. IM Nitin and five others scored 7.5 points and Nitin was declared third, followed by International Arbiter S Ganesh Babu of Madurai. Saravana Krishnan bagged a cash prize of Rs.70,000/- and Ram received Rs.50,000. More than 200 prizes were distributed in the form of cash prizes and trophies.
Sri.C. Yogendran, President of SIPT Polytechnic inaugurated the tournament in the presence of Sri. Balasubramanian, former Correspondent of the college. On the final day, Sri. VR Muthu, CEO of Idhayam group of companies delivered an inspiring speech, before distributing the prizes. Mr. T.D. Rajendran, main sponsor of the Polytechnic, who recently won five gold medals and a silver medal in an international athletic meet for veterans in Singapore was felicitated.
Sumptuous food at a nominal cost was provided to players and parents. The organisers, Sivakasi Chess Sparklers have to be appreciated for their non-profit approach and involvement for the success of the tournament. Three players who predicted the correct champion, before the beginning of final round were awarded with books.