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Indian Sudoku Championship 2011

The Indian Sudoku Championship 2011 will consist of 14 regional rounds held in the months of January to March 2011. The top 3 from each of these regional rounds will be invited for the national finals on 11-Jun-2011. The team which will represent India at the World Sudoku Championship will be selected on the basis of the performance in the Indian Sudoku Championship National Final.

Championship Page

There are several ways in which you could qualify for a position in the National Finals.

You could be amongst the top 3 at one of the regional rounds.
You could be amongst the top 15 from the Online Qualifying round which will be held on date.

The 14 regional rounds will be held as a part of the college festivals in reputed colleges in different colleges across the country. The regional rounds will be held in the cities of Mumbai, Chennai, Kharagpur, Rourkela, Goa, Guwahati, Bangalore, Kanpur, Hyderabad, Ranchi, Bhopal, Delhi, Roorkee and Pilani in the months from January to March. The regional round finals will be held between the top 60 participants from the region. The 60 finalists will be selected from Regional Prelims which will be open to all participants. For more details regarding the venue and dates of the regional round nearest to you please have a look at the Schedule.

Download Instruction Booklet (Online Qualification)
Download Puzzle Booklet (Online Qualification)

The regional rounds went really well and it was nice to see so many participants in the online round too.

List of Qualifiers

The national finals was held on 11th June at Community Hall inside DRDO Complex, CV Raman Nagar, Bengaluru (Bangalore)

Download Instruction Booklet

10th June, 2011
I took a flight to Bengaluru and reached Rajesh's house around 6pm. After a brief nap, I spent some time with Rajesh's family and relaxed. Last year, I won the Indian Sudoku Championship (and the Indian Puzzle Championship) and going into this year's finals being the defending champion was not the easiest thing for me. There were a lot of first-timers due to the regional rounds and the regular group of good players were anyways there. These were my thoughts about some of the players

Gaurav Korde: Has been away for a while, but a great performance in Beijing shows how he can pull himself at critical times.
Rakesh Rai: Has been very consistent and I believed him to be the dark horse.
Rishi Puri: Last year's runner-up, who has been in tremendous form lately with his recent exploits in Beijing.
Ritesh Gupta: 3-time national champion would be raring to get his title back.
Sumit Bothra: Out of practise, but can deliver when needed.
Tejal Phatak: Has been consistently rising and offline events are her strength.

It was a big disappointment when Rishi had to cancel his trip. His absence at the finals meant a pillar went missing. Some people felt I should've been happy since a big contender of the title had pulled out. But I like competition and I've always enjoyed a fight, irrespective of the result. Adding to Rishi's absence, Rakesh and Jaipal too pulled out at the last moment thus thinning the competition to a great extent. I was very disappointed but I couldn't do much about it.

11th June, 2011
The competition hall was huge and as Sumit mentioned 'It gave the feel of a puzzle championship'. I felt comfortable and I was hoping to make it in the Indian team at least, if not win the championship.

Round 1
Download Puzzle Booklet
It was a perfect beginning for me. I was able to finish the round with a 1-minute time bonus. I was shell-shocked when the results came out to see I already had a 95-point lead over 2nd place Tejal and a 190-point lead over 3rd place Ritesh.

Round 2
Download Puzzle Booklet
I finished 6 of the 7 sudokus in 50 minutes and had 10 minutes to complete Odd-Even Frame. It was disappointing to miss the last one, but good enough to top the round and extend my lead.

Round 3
Download Puzzle Booklet
I never expected to complete this round, but I had a big advantage by finishing Equal Sum and Multiplication Table within 25 minutes. I even checked every 2x2 region of Equal Sum to make sure I didn't go wrong. I finished all the sudokus with a 5-minute bonus and this was when I was sure of retaining my ISC title.

Round 4
Download Puzzle Booklet
I wanted to win ISC by topping all four rounds and it went exactly as I would've liked. I spent more than 10 minutes on the 'very difficult' Touchy but couldn't crack it. I got the first Classic wrong with a silly error, but I topped the round with 350, just 20 more than Tejal!


1. Rohan Rao (Mumbai) - 1895
2. Ritesh Gupta (Delhi) - 1155
3. Sumit Bothra (Kolkata) - 1140
4. Tejal Phatak (Mumbai) - 1105
5. Gaurav Korde (Mumbai) - 970
6. Prasanna Seshadri (Mumbai) - 765
7. Harmeet Singh (Bengaluru) - 740
8. Himanshu Mittal (Delhi) - 725
9. Akash Doulani (Kolkata) - 710
10. Rajesh Kumar (Bengaluru) - 670

Complete Results

Sumit Bothra and Deb Mohanty

Ritesh Gupta and Deb Mohanty

Rohan Rao and Deb Mohanty

Relieved, excited and happy, I won ISC 2011 and retained my title. I knew we were going to be given certificates but I had no idea there were trophies for the top 3. The certificates and trophies were both wonderful!

Looking at the results, Gaurav Korde had a disappointing day. Most of us expected him to be in the top 3. Tejal Phatak performed extremely well and so did debutant Prasanna Seshadri. Harmeet Singh had a fantastic weekend, too.

The sudokus were exceptionally good, especially Round 3. I felt the 6x6 Linked Sudokus of Round 1 were slightly tougher than what it should've been.
I liked Odd-Even View from Round 2, Mulitplication Table from Round 3 and Classic-Diagonal from Round 4.
All the rounds were well-timed, without any problems.

It was a wonderful event, had excellent puzzles, was organised infallibly and ended on a successful note.

The entire event was co-ordinated by one man, Deb Mohanty, who spent a lot of time and effort in ensuring the success of the event. Not only did he organise the event, he created every one of the sudokus of the championship. I wonder how he managed to do this all by himself. He must be super-man!


I thank Rajesh Kumar, Deb Mohanty and their families for giving me accomodation. Special thanks to Deb Mohanty and his team (view credits) for organising this wonderful event which went very smoothly and was a huge success.


L'ours said...

Congratulations Rohan ! Not that I don't believe in you, but I didn't expect such an easy victory. You did really well ; I wonder what you are gonna do in Hungary.

Rohan Rao said...

Thanks Bastien. I surprised myself to an extent as well but yes, it did turn out as an easy victory.

Hungary will have a different league of players and I hope I continue my good run and improve on my last year's performance.
November is not far away :-)

Rajesh Kumar said...

I liked you attitude of loving the competition. This is the quality which makes you best Sudoku and Puzzle player in India.

Rohan Rao said...

Thanks Rajesh. I always believe it is competition thats makes the best improve and come out with their best performance :-)