Bulgaria's Salimova Battles to Draw Against Muzychuk in World Chess Showdown

In a riveting match at the World Chess Challengers Tournament in Toronto, Bulgarian chess prodigy Nurgyul Salimova showcased her skills yet again, securing a hard-fought draw against Ukrainian opponent Anna Muzychuk. The encounter, which lasted five and a half hours, ended in a stalemate on the 120th move, marking Salimova's fifth draw in the tournament.

Playing with the white pieces, the 20-year-old from the Bulgarian village of Krepcha displayed remarkable resilience and tactical acumen throughout the game. Despite maintaining control and holding the advantage for much of the match, Salimova was unable to convert her dominance into a decisive victory. A missed opportunity presented itself on move 54 when she had the chance to seize the initiative by capturing Muzychuk's knight on E5 with her rook. However, time pressure proved to be a decisive factor, causing Salimova to overlook this critical detail.

With the draw, Salimova's point tally now stands at 3.5, positioning her in fifth place in the overall standings with six rounds remaining. Meanwhile, Muzychuk occupies the seventh spot with 3 points. At the top of the leaderboard, a three-way tie exists between Russian Aleksandra Goryachkina and Chinese players Lei Tingjie and Tan Zhongyi, all boasting 5 points each. Goryachkina recently drew her match against compatriot Kateryna Lagno, while Tingjie inflicted Zhongyi's first defeat of the tournament.

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