India started its World Chess Olympiad medal campaign in style with its men’s and women’s teams blanking 4-0 Bolivia and the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia respectively here on Friday.
Both the Indian teams rested their top players for their respective first round clashes. While the men’s team opted to rest World No 16 Grandmaster (GM) Pentala Harikrishna, the women’s team chose to leave out World No 5 GM Harika Dronavalli.
Seeded 11th, the Indian men’s team comprised of GMs B. Adhiban, Vidit Santosh Gujrathi, S.P. Sethuraman and Karthikeyan Murali.
True to their seeding, the Indian team overcame the much lower rated Bolivians on the board easily.
Other top teams like Russia, China, Azerbaijan, US, Ukraine and Poland also blanked their opponents in the open section.
Similarly the fifth seeded Indian women’s team — comprising of International Master (IM) Padmini Rout, International Master (IM) Tania Sachdev, Women’s Grand Master (WGM) Soumya Swaminathan and Women’s International Master (WIM) Pratyusha Bodda — overcame their lower rated opponents without much sweat.
In the women’s section, the top four seeded China, Ukraine, Russia and Georgia also scored 4-0 wins against their respective opponents.