Sikkim chess player Rahul Gurung draws with the experienced Grand Master Sergey Volkov, who is the former Russian champion, in the Round 2 of the Kathmandu Open Grand Master Chess Championship 2018.
The Chess Championship was held from 12 to 17 April at Kathmandu.
16-years-old Rahul Gurung hails from Lumsey in East Sikkim and is currently the North-East champion.
A two-member team of Sikkim Chess Association [SCA], Rahul Gurung and Thendup Tamang, had participated in the prestigious tournament. They were accompanied by SCA general secretary, Mahendra Dhakal as the team manager.
216 players from 20 countries participated in the tournament.
Despite his big achievement, Rahul also became the champion in his category of 1700 to 2000 rating of the tournament. He also improved his rating by 55 in the tournament to increase his rating to 2020.
Addressing a press conference here today, Rahul expressed his immense happiness on playing a draw against such an experienced GM in the tournament.
“This tournament is really special for me as I had not only played against any GM before but also held him for a draw. The appreciations received for this achievement in the tournament has boosted my confidence to practice harder for future competitions,” he said.
He has been practicing hard to become the first International Master from the north-east region. There is no IM from the region so far. “I have been practicing hard to fulfill my goal of becoming the first International Master from north-eastern region within two years,” Rahul said.
Likewise, Dhakal mentioned that Rahul was in the winning position but due to time constraints the game finally ended in a draw. “Grand Master Sergey Volkov was the top seeded player in the tournament and to hold him for a draw is a really big achievement for Rahul in his chess career,” he expressed.
Sikkim Chess Association executive members congratulated Rahul for his big achievement and wished him luck for his future competitions.