Indian grandmaster Nihal Sarin, on Thursday, bagged the Rapid title in the ongoing Tata Steel Chess in Kolkata. The 18-year-old walked away with the title with one round remaining in the tournament.

Entering the eighth and penultimate round with a 1.5 point lead, Nihal Sarin beat Iran GM Parham Maghsoodloo in a white piece to ensure he secured the title with one round of play remaining in the tournament.

Earlier in the day, Sarin had beaten Shakhriyar Mamedyarov in black pieces to prepare well in the last two rounds. He is currently unbeaten in the tournament at 6.5/8.

He will face fellow Indian and close friend Arjun Erigiasi, who is currently second, in Thursday night’s final.

Nihal finished the second day of the event on Wednesday as the lone leader with a score of 4.5 from 6 matches. He had beaten D Gukesh and SP Sethuraman before drawing with Wesley So.

The young man from Kerala started his Tata Steel Rapid campaign with a double draw against Hikaru Nakamura and current World Rapid Champion Nodirbek Abdusattorov. He then ended day one with a win over Indian veteran Vidit Gujrathi in black pieces.

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