Friday, May 15, 2009

Pacman, Econg, Asing and Wesley

FORMER Cebu Executives and Professional Chess Association (Cepca) president Nicnic Climaco, who has earned a handful on all of Manny’s fights, has an interesting observation that might be true. During the various television programs promoting the Pacquiao-Hatton mega-fight, Manny was seen playing chess during breaks while training. From what I have gathered thus far, he is quite good at it.

“Pacman is an analytical boxer,” says Nicnic. “That is why he is a great fighter. He analyzes his opponents especially their weaknesses, and trains himself accordingly. That is the mind of a chess player.”

"The Manny Pacquiao Blog". Click here for stories and updates on the Filipino boxing champ.

Do you know that there is a sport known as chessboxing? It is now quite popular in Europe and has a big following. I wrote about this hybrid years ago and several championship fights in different weight classes have been fought.

Enrico “Econg” Sevillano, a protégée of Bombi Aznar and a Cebuano, is now playing in the 2009 US Open in St. Louis from May 8 to 17 where he is the defending champion. He made headlines last year and earned a cover on Chess Life. He is playing below his usual self as his score is three points after six rounds. He still has a chance though to get a GM norm.

It is ironic that a rich country such as the USA can only give so much money to its most prestigious tournament. This year has been an exception, though, as the total prize money is $130,000, primarily due to retired investment fund manager Rex Sinquefield. The winner earns $35,000 plus a bonus of $64,000 if he wins all his games like what Bobby Fischer did in the 1964 US Open.

By the third round, nobody has scored 100 percent so that prize won’t be awarded.

When our club, Cepca, was organized in 1990, one of those who helped us was the late NM Glicerio “Asing” Badilles. Asing devoted practically all his life to chess and the game owes a lot to him. He was an adviser of Cepca until his demise.

The first ever (NM) Glicerio Badilles Memorial Chess Cup 2009 tournament was played last Tuesday and Wednesday at the Moalboal Municipal Hall. The tournament was open only to Barili up to Santander residents.

Asing was born and raised in Moalboal, which is also home to our family’s favorite resort.

Chief arbiter was Odilon Badilles,his son. Prizes were P5,000, P3,000 ,P2,000, P1,000 and P500 up to the 10th place. Those prizes are attractive enough by local standards.

The winner was Merlo Dapar (Barili), Arnel Montayre (Ronda) and Joselito Sacnanas (Moalboal).Other placers were Silo Paquero,Jose Gador, Remy Tejo and Angelito Pableo, all from Moalboal.

The tournament was organized by Councilor Raymond Mendoza of Moalboal with the assistance of former Cepca president Manny Manzanares.

Speaking of Manny, he is active nowadays promoting chess and his project this month is a Summer Chess Clinic open to kiddies 14 years and below.

It will be held from May 18 to 31 at San Roque Barangay Hall and will be conducted by NM Odilon Badilles and Manny himself. Topic will be mostly basic chess principles.

The Asia Continental Chess Championship started last Wednesday at Subic and it is one of the qualification stages for the World Cup scheduled this year in Khanty Mansiysk (Russia), and to the Women’s World Championship next year.

This is now the moment of truth for Wesley So (2641). A top 10 performance here will give him a slot at the 2009 World Cup. He won the first round against Gundavaa Bayarsaikhan of Mongolia last Wednesday.

He is seeded second behind Sasikiran Krishnan (2682) of India and his main competitors will be GM Zhou Jianchao (2635), Kazhgaleyev Murtas (2626), Ganguly Surya Shekhar (2625), Ghaem Maghami Ehsan (2593), Negi Parimarjan (2592) and Hou Yifan (2590).

Most of the local GMs and IMs are also playing including, Eugene Torre.

1 comment:

rolly said...

from what I know, chess was introduced in the South by the Muslim traders... long before the Spaniards come

Correct me if Im wrong...