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Divya Deshmukh's Dazzling Day

WGM Divya Deshmukh bulldozed over the field with three impressive victories in three games on day two to take the sole lead with a score of 5.5/6 in the Tata Steel Chess India Women's Rapid tournament. Women's World Champion Ju Wenjun had another undefeated day, scoring two points to occupy the second position in the standings with four points, trailing Divya by a 1.5-point margin.

Article by : V. Saravanan /

Overnight joint leader IM Vantika Agrawal had a difficult day at the office, suffering three defeats and remaining on 2.5/6 points. GM Nino Batsiashvili, too, met three defeats on the day, taking her cumulative losses to four in a row.

The Women's Raid continues on September 2 at 5:30 a.m. ET / 11:30 CEST / 15:00 IST.

How to watch the Tata Steel India Chess Women's Rapid & Blitz

You can watch the event live on Twitch, as well as our YouTube channels for and Chess24. Keep up with all the details of the tournament on our live events platform, and follow the live games by clicking here.

The broadcast was hosted by GM Robert Hess and IM Soumya Swaminathan.

With Kolkata being a sports-friendly city and Tata Steel a prominent sports promoter in India, the organizers treat the players with pomp and pampering, which includes a ride to the tournament hall every day with a police escort:


The young Divya has certainly lived up to such a celebrity-worthy treatment, making a splash in such a tough tournament so far and pulling off one of her most impressive performances ever, despite being a last-minute replacement for IM Vaishali R:

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Appearing at the live commentary after the game, Divya confessed that she did not expect her excellent performance and revealed her modest intentions for the day: "My only goal for today was not to lose all three matches! Since I am the last minute new entry in the tournament, it gives me a lot more advantage, as I do not have any pressure on me to perform. I am just focussing mainly on my mindset on my prep(aration)."

My only goal for today was not to lose all three matches!

—Divya Deshmukh

Divya indeed showed considerable opening stability throughout the day. She began the day briskly, going up against the heavyweight GM Irina Krush in round four and controlling the game from beginning to end. Though surprised in the opening and falling behind on the clock, she showed admirable poise to play steady throughout.


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