Chinese chess queen Hou Yifan cruised into the quarter-finals of the Women’s Speed Chess Championship with a crushing 15:6 defeat of Gulnar Mammadova.
The top-rated female player started off with three straight victories and never looked back steamrolling her opponent in the 5+1 and 3+1 segments of the match. Gulnar, on the other hand, found some comfort in winning the last 1+1 section.
Hou Yifan’s quarterfinal opponent will be Bibisara Assaubayeva.
In the first match of the day, another Chinese player, Lei Tingjie, defeated young Indian star Vaishali R by a score of 14:6.
The 5+1 portion started with an exchange of blows. It was back and forth for six games before Lei Tingjie claimed this segment of the match after winning the seventh game. In the 3+1 section, Lei picked up steam and won four games in a row. Although Vaishali managed to strike back in a couple of bullet games, Chinese #4 eliminated any chance of a possible comeback crushing her opponent in five games at the end.
In the quarterfinals, Lei Tingjie will take on Antoaneta Stefanova.
The battle between two Ukrainian players – Anna Muzychuk and Iulija Osmak – also turned out to be a lopsided affair that ended with 17½:4½ in the favor of Anna, who won all three segments.
“It is the first time for me to play in such a strong tournament and I think lack of experience was my main problem in this match. My opponent played very well. It was a really good fight and I congratulate Anna for this victory,” said Iulija Osmak.
“I had some troubles with the French defence in the first portion of the match, 5+1, but then it went better and pretty smoothly,” commented Anna Muzychuk. Her next opponent is India’s Harika Dronavalli.