Harika plays out second draw with Kosteniuk, heads to tie-breaker
KHANTY MANSIYSK (RUSSIA): Grandmaster D Harika settled for a second straight draw with former champion Alexandra Kosteniuk of Russia to set up a tie-breaker against the same opponent in the third round of the World Women’s Chess Championship here on Saturday. After the first game against the same opponent ended in a draw, Harika was with black pieces in the second and she employed a French defence and Kosteniuk did not have many answers. The opening turned out to be pleasing for black and Harika was quick to neutralise with a finely crafted pawn advance that saw exchange of a few pieces leading to a balanced endgame. While in the first game, Harika had fought for a long time to find an advantage, as black she was happy to call it a draw in just 29 moves. Harika will now take her chances in the rapid chess games of 25 minutes given to each player and if the scores are tied, they play a couple of games with ten minutes each. Harika is the last remaining Indian in the fray following the ouster of Padmini Rout, Bhakti Kulkarni and Koneru Humpy.