Harpal Singh Bedi
New Delhi: Though the Asian Games are still 8 months away, All India Chess Federation (AICF) has shortlisted players for the continental extravaganza to be held in Hangzhou, China.
The team has been selected on the basis of their International Rating and Vidit Gujarathi, P Harikrishna, Nihal Sarin, S L Narayanan, K Sasikiran, B Adhiban, Karthikeyan Murali, Arjun Erigaisi, Abhijeet Gupta and Surya Shekhar Ganguly made the cut in the Men team
The women’s team will be selected from K Humpy, D Harika, Vaishali R, Tania Sachdev, Bhakti Kulkarni, Vantika Agrawal, Mary Ann Gomes, Soumya Swaminathan and Eesha Karavade.
The selection committee consisting of Abhijit Kunte, Dibeyandu Barua and Dinesh Sharma will decide the final list of five players in the month of April.
AlICF is optimistic of a rich medal haul from their men and women team when the chess discipline returns to the Asian Games fold after 12 years.
Aiming to make a big difference from 2010 Guangzhou Games, where India only achieved two bronze medals, AICF started the preparation well in advance by selecting ten each probable to the men and women team.
Eyeing the four gold medals at stake in the games,former World champion Viswanathan Anand took a different role and will mentor the team and first session with him and players will kick start next Thursday.
The chess event of the games will start on 11 September and will be played in two formats. The Individual Event of Men and Women will be played in Rapid time control from 11 September to 14 September while four Board five-member Team Event will be played under Standard time control from 16 September to 24 September.