Mumbai lad Armaan Gala wins gold in Italy Junior Chess

India's armaan gala of Mumbai continuing with his recent success in Europe added another title to his name winning a prestigious gold medal in the Under-16 category at the XXVI Annual Lucca International Championships which concluded at Palazzo Gunigi in Lucca, Italy on Sunday.

Armaan finished with with a tally of 4.5 points out of possible 5.

A 9th student of Oberoi International School and a trainee of the South Mumbai Chess Academy (SMCA), 15-year-old Armaan is the first and only player from India to clinch this coveted Junior title in Italy. According to a media release from the Mumbai City District Chess Association (MCDCA).

An icing on a cake , this is Armaan's second International title within a fortnight following his U-18 title in the Group B category at Weiz International chess championships in Austria last week.

This chess championship was held in four different categories Group A , Group B , Group C and the Under-16 category. In Group A, a total of 58 players took part with four Grandmasters, two International Masters and several other renowned players. Grandmaster Delchev Alkesander of Bulgaria was the top seed with an ELO of 2610.

In the Under-16 category, a total of 26 players were in the fray. Armaan, with an Elo of 1551 , was the top seed of the championship followed by Vecoli Martina (ELO 1539) and Bechelli Flavio (1518) of Italy. In the fourth and fifth round, Armaan held both the players convincingly and went on to lift the coveted title by remaining unbeaten in this championship.

Armaans fourth round game with vecoli martina was an interesting and crucial one being the title decider match, playing with black pieces up to middle game position martina enjoyed a very superior position until armaan turned the game strikingly on his side by launching a brilliant attack on the queen side with the pawns storm and finally forced her to resign by threatening a powerful outside passer on the queen side.

Speaking about his ward's victory , armaans coach nagesh guttula said, "Armaan has a natural flair for game and has been looking forward to this championship and he worked hard to achieve this victory."

Elated over Armaan's third International title, his father, Jal Gala said, "During school vacations Armaan doesn't like to join us for family holidays instead he prefers to travel across the world and participate in various chess meets. Since he has moved into 10th standard now, the summers vacations is the only period when he gets to spend more time for chess. He is self-motivated and a responsible child. He balances studies and chess well on his own. We just support his endeavours."

Armaan's proud mother Shazia said, "We are very proud of our son. We are glad that his focus is on chess and academics and his is not distracted with social networking apps and gizmos. I hope he goes on to do the country proud in the future as well."

Jubilant armaan said "this was the best event of his career more than the title he is happy with the kind of games he played this time in the championship which were consisted of impressive sacrifices, great attacks and lot of calculation.

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