Aleksej Aleksandrov of Belarus justified his top billing by clinching the title at the Mumbai Mayor’s Cup International chess tournament here today.
In the 11th and final round, the Belarussian fought grittily to defeat Mark Paragua of Philippines to aggregate 9.5 points and emerge a clear winner.
There was a three-way tie for the second place with Andrei Deviatkin of Russia, Ziaur Rahman of Bangladesh and Attila Czeba of Hungary tallying 9 points each and finishing in that order.
Nikolai Chadaev of Russia, John Paul Gomez of Philippines, B Adhiban of India, Kirill Stupak of Belarus and Debashis Das of India scored 8.5 points and were placed fifth to ninth in the respective order.
Abhijit Kunte, with 8 points, finished 10th.
Deviatkin and Stupak settled for a short draw while there were intense battles fought on the other top boards.
Ziaur Rahman showed grit and plenty of fighting spirit to defeat overnight joint leader Gomez in an entertaining game which could have gone either way.
Aditya Udeshi, the only Indian title hope going into the final round with 8 points, was defeated by Czebe while Adhiban, who started as the fourth seed, finished 7th.
The tournament organised by Venus Chess Academy at Chetana College was co-sponsored by LIC of India.