Friday, July 31, 2009

Darwin pulls a rabbit

Thursday, July 30, 2009
Print Email Comment Subscribe

Frank 'Boy' Pestaño

IN what was not expected practically by every Tom, Dick and Harry who plays chess, Darwin Laylo pulled a rabbit to win the Zone 3.3 Fide tournament in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam by an amazing seven wins and two draws (8/9) to again qualify to the prestigious 2009 World Cup.

In doing so, he had an incredible performance rating of 2795 though he was rated only 10th at the start.

For updates from around the country, follow Sun.Star on Twitter

Wesley So was solo second (6.5/9) to claim the other slot to the World Cup. He was also undefeated with 4 wins and 5draws.

We now have three qualifiers, including Joey Antonio, who earlier finished in the top 10 in the Asian Championship in Subic--a historic first.

The World Chess Cup is scheduled in Khanty-Mansiysk, Russia on Nov. 20 to Dec. 15 this year and the winner will compete for the World Championship.

Darwin had wins over Tran Ngoc Lan, Vo Thanh, Ninh Bao Khoa, Duong Te Anh and draws against So and Nguyen Truong Son. He capped his incredible run with victories against strong GM Susanto Megaranto of Indonesia and super GM Zhang Zhong of Singapore. Wow na wow!

The other Pinoys who played were Mark Paragua (6.0), Rolando Nolte (5.0) and chess icon Eugene Torre (4.5). Cebuano Richard Bitoon again missed that elusive GM norm (5.0).

Wesley’s penchant for draws almost did him in. He halved the points with Laylo (14 moves), Zhang Zhong (11) and Paragua (8) for a total of 33 moves in three games! He won’t get far in the World Cup where aggressiveness is the key but I guess he just played it safe.

In the distaff side, sisters Sherily and Shercila Cua had identical 4,5/9, while Catherine Perena and Daisy Rivera had 4.0. The winners were Munguntuul Batkhuyag of Mongolia (7.5) and Nguyen Thi Mai Hung(7.0) of the host city.

Amidst all the sound and fury of the past three years is the remarkable rise of chess from the bottom of the barrel. It is due in large part to Prospero “Butch” Pichay, who has done a remarkable job as president of the National Chess Federation of the Philippines.

BIEL. The 42nd Biel International Chess fiesta is taking place from July 18 to 31. There are 10 different tournaments (open, rapid, blitz, team, youth, Chess 960) attracting more than 1,000 players.

The main event is a Category 19 double round robin featuring Vassily Ivanchuk, Evgeny Alekseev, Boris Gelfand, Fabiano Caruana, Alexander Morozevich and Maxime Vachier-Lagrave.

After 9 rounds, Vachier-Lagrave is leading with 5.5/8.

Other side events were a doubles tennis competition and for the first time in Biel history, a poker contest among chess players.

MAINZ. Chess Classic Mainz is a monster event of superlatives.

It takes place once a year in Mainz, Germany and spans seven full days from July 27 until Aug. 2.

The event includes tournaments and opens and random chess, while the main event features World Champion Vishy Anand, Levon Aronian of Armenia, strong Russian junior Ian Nepomniachtchi and top German Arkadij Naiditsch.

Notable side events, which normally attract more than 1,000 players, are the 16th Ordix Open (Aug. 1 and 2) , FiNet Chess960 Open (July 30 and 31), 3rd Mini-Ordix (July 28), the 3rd Mini-FiNet (July 29) for children and the 5th Livingston Chess960 Computer World Championship (July 29 to 31).

Aronian is the star this year and is playing a simul against 40 amateurs and is also competing in the Chess960 edition.

He is the envy of chess lovers for being the boyfriend of famous beauty Fil-Aussie mestiza WIM Arianne Caoili, who is also playing and turning heads in Mainz.

Arianne has already qualified to the Women’s World Cup 2009 by winning the Oceania Zone and will represent Australia.

No comments: