TBILISI, June 27 -- Grandmaster Hou Yifan of China, reigning world champion, has extended her lead at the current 2013-2014 FIDE women's grand prix fifth and penultimate leg by beating Nana Dzagnidze from hosts Georgia on Thursday.
Hou now has 6.5 points from seven rounds while her closest rivals, Nana Dzagnidze and Ju Wenjun also of China, both have 5 points each.
Hou, so far the only unbeaten player among the 12 players at Lopota, now looks likely to clinch her third FIDE women's grand prix title. The Chinese player won the 2009-2010 and 2011-2012 chess grand prix tournaments.
Thursday's win also leveled the women's grand prix head-to-head scores between Hou and Dzagnidze who have played five matches so far in the grand prix tournaments, each winning two matches and drawing one.
Friday's 8th rounder may also separate Ju and Dzagnidze on the second echelon when the two play each other.
Following are current tallies for the women players at the Lopota tourney:
Hou Yifan, China, 6.5 points (6 wins, 1 draw)
Nana Dzagnidze, Georgia, 5 points (4 wins, 2 draws, 1 defeat)
Ju Wenjun, China, 5 points (4 wins, 2 draws, 1 defeat)
Anna Muzychuk, Ukraine, 4.5 points (3 wins, 3 draws, 1 defeat)
Harika Dronavalli, India, 4 points (2 wins, 4 draws, 1 defeat)
Humpy Koneru, India, 4 points (2 wins, 4 draws, 1 defeat)
Elina Danielian, Armenia, 4 point (2 wins, 4 draws, 1 defeat)
Antoaneta Stefanova, Bulgaria, 3 points (2 wins, 2 draws, 3 defeats)
Alexandra Kosteniuk, Russia, 3 point (2 wins, 2 draws, 3 defeats)
Zhao Xue, China, 1.5 point (3 draws, 4 defeats)
Bela Khotenashvili, Georgia, 1 point (2 draws, 5 defeats)
Nafisa Muminova, Uzbekistan, 0.5 point (1 draw, 6 defeats)