*GM Sandipan Chanda and GM Harsha Bharathakoti (Photo by Shahid Ahmed)

Eleventh seed Grandmaster Priyanka Nuttaki stunned top seed and former Asian Women Champion Tania Sachdev while Saina Salonika beat fourth seed  Bhakti Kulkarni in the fourth round of the Asian Continental  Chess Championship at Leela Ambience Convention Hotel here.

In the Open section, top seed Praggnanandhaa R defeated IM Pranav Anand to join overnight sole leader Leon Luke Mendonca and four others on the leader's board.  

*Pranav Anand-Praggnanandhaa (Photo by Shahid Ahmed)

Pragganandhaa and Mendonca now have the company of compatriot Karthikeyan Murali, Harsha Bharathakoti, Turkmenistan Grandmaster Maksat Atabayev and International Master Koustav Chatterjee are sharing the lead with three and half points.

On top board, Mendonca showed great defensive skill to hold second seed Narayanan S L while Karthikeyan Murali outwitted Aditya Mittal in a finely crafted play with a pair of bishops. 

Harsha Bharthakoti joined the leaders after capitalizing on crucial errors made by his compatriot Sandipan Chanda while Koustav Chatterjee had a lucky escape against Kazakh No. 1 Grandmaster Rinat Jumabayev to secure full point from the outing.  

*Priyanka Nutakki and Tania Sachdev (Photo by Shahid Ahmed)

The lone non-Indian among the leaders, Atabayev got the better of Grandmaster Aryan Chopra in a long battle that ended after 90 moves.

In other important encounters in the Women’s section, Nandhidhaa P V beat Vantika Agrawal while Vietnamese Women Grandmaster Vo Thi Kim Phung defeated Liya Kurmangaliyeva to be at joint leaders position along with Priyanka, Nandhidhaa and Soumya Swaminathan, who beat Thi Mai Hung Nguyen of Vietnam in the fourth round encounter.

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