Friday, June 26, 2015

Pestaño: Cepca is now 25 years old

 Friday, June 26, 2015
THE Cebu Executives and Professionals Chess Association (Cepca) was founded by Chessmoso in the third week of June 1990 with the following original members as co-founders-Art Ynclino (deceased), Sonny Sollano (deceased), Gerry Tomakin (deceased), Danny Pestano (deceased), Bombi Aznar (deceased), Loy Minoza (deceased), Alex Tolentino and Nicnic Climaco.
By September, we were already more than 50 members so we decided to incorporate with the following additional incorporators--Rene Tolo, Elson Ogario, Serge Borres and then Guadalupe Barangay captain Antolin Jariol Jr (deceased),Bob Inocian and Bebs Andales, who is presently a councilor of Cebu City.
The following have been presidents of the club--Chessmoso (charter president for 2 years 1990-92, Alex Tolentino (92-93), Gerry Tomakin (93-94), Ben Dimaano (94-95), Danny Pestano (two terms 95-97), Ogie Reyes (97-98), Arwin Barrios (98-99) Nicnic Climaco (99-2000) Manny Manzanares (2000-01), Vic Legaspina (2001-02), Norway Lara (02-03), Renato Casia (03-04), Jun Olis (two terms 04-06), Mandy Baria (06-07), Emmamuel Matuco (07-08), Bobot Villaluna ( two terms 08-10) , Manny Manzanares (10-11). Jojo Muralla (two terms 11- 13) and Jerry Maratas (now on his second term as president).
Foreigners who became members of the club were Marte Lemvigfog, Graham Maitland Smith, Stelvio Guglielmi, Adlai Adams, Anders Berg and Roar Sorensen.
Honorary members are Bombi Aznar, who was replaced by his son Andrew, Bodjie Lim, Kelly Uy, Darcy Tabotabo, Sonny Bas, Manny Iway, former Mayor Alvin Garcia and Mayor Mike Rama.
Lady members are rare as a dodo. One of the early members was NM Susan Itaas and Marilou Pagarigan, the chess coach of Cebu International school and a teacher who I understand is now teaching in Korea. Susan is the only lady master of Cebu, a member of the Philippine team to the Olympiad and is based now in the USA as an accountant. Other lady members are Therese dela Torre, Harvey Jane Hilvano and Jessa Balbona
Others who are now residents of the USA are Rene Tolo and Josito Dondo. Rene was one of the most outstanding members of the club and Sito made headlines by winning $10,000 in a single tournament there.
Through the years we invited grandmasters to play simuls in Cebu, namely, Jorge Hickl (Germany), Edmar Mednis (USA), Alexander Wojiewich (Poland), Walter Arencibia (Cuba) , Carlos Juarez (Guatemala), Ian Rogers (Australia), Ye Rongguang (China), Dibyendo Barua (India), Jaime Sunye- Neto (Brazil), Eugene Torre and the latest, Cebuano Econg Sevillano.
At the very start we were very active that’s why membership grew to more than 120 members in the first two years. We were based in Baseline thanks to the late owners, Doring and Ponsoy Canizares.
During the first 10 years or so, our tournaments lasted for seven to nine days, as time control was classical, which was 90 minutes per player and only one game was played every day.
We are eternally grateful to the Sports editors of Sun.Star and the Freeman, the late Lando Sanchez and Glenn Basubas for actively covering our tournaments on a daily basis . I also had chess columns in Newstime and Freeman in the mid 90s.
Our arbiter at the start were the late Winnie Badilles and father IM Asing Badilles, who was the judge for our brilliancy prizes.
We also had special team matches against Manila executives , headed by Jenny Mayor, , Mindanao executives, headed by James Infuesto and Rey Urbiztondo. We also had special matches against Lapu-Lapu City seven times, and against Cifyya, three times.
Up to now we are the only organization that has participated in the Sinulog(1992) in three categories--free interpretation (dancing to the Budapest gambit), float and 32 mini- higantes and two higantes representing Bobby Fischer and Boris Spassky.

Friday, June 19, 2015

Pestaño: Great chess players are getting younger

 Friday, June 19, 2015
BOBBY Fischer became a grandmaster at the age of 15 years 6 months and one day in 1958 and was a phenomenon then. He dominated his contemporaries to an extent never seen before or since.
The record stood for a long 33 years and was at last broken in 1991 by Judit Polgar, who became a GM at the age of 15 years 4 months and 28 days.
Since then, 32 players have become GMs at a younger age. The main reason is the advent of chess computers, which are rated at more than 3300 or more than 400 points over the highest-rated player now. Training is easily available using an ordinary PC .
Also, the popularity of chess has improved by leaps and bounds as the number of adherents worldwide has increased to more than 700 million compared to just 600 million over a decade ago. The increase has been mostly among the very young due to Chess in Schools.
There are also many more tournaments now where one can get a GM norm and there are lots of training materials available.
Among the very young who are expected to dominate the chess scene ,aside from World Champion Magnus Carlsen, are Fabiano Caruana, Hikaru Nakamura, Wesley So and Anish Giri, who are all in their 20s.
Hikaru Nakamura pointed to Caruana as a player who--if he reaches his full potential--could take the title away from Carlsen down the line. Nakamura himself is now rated in the 2800s. Wesley is improving from tournament to tournament . Giri is a terror at the board, having participated in several major invitational tournaments and acquitting himself well over the years.
But this article is not about them. It is about five new up and coming players who have grabbed the attention of everybody.
China’s rise in the world of chess has been meteoric ever since the turn of the millennium. China is a powerhouse and in fact won the gold medal in the last Olympiad in Norway..
The Chinese Chess Championship is currently regarded as one of the most competitive events in the world.
So when 16-year-old Grandmaster Wei Yi won the Chinese Championship, it is a testament to his unusual talent.
Wei became GM at the age of 13 years, 8 months and 23 days, the youngest grandmaster in the world at that time, and the fourth youngest in history. He also became the youngest to reach the 2700 barrier and is now at 2721, No. 30 in the world.
Fourteen-year-old IM Jeffery Xiong shocked the field at the 2015 Chicago Open, finishing clear first with 7.0/9, ahead of several strong grandmasters. It was held last May 21-25, in Wheeling, Illinois. More than 600 participants gathered at the Westin Chicago North Shore Hotel, including no fewer than 24 grandmasters and 18 masters.
The top seeds were GMs Lazaro Bruzon (Cuba), Gata Kamsky(USA), Ilya Nyzhnyk (Ukraine) and Daniel Naroditsky (USA). Well-known grandmasters Boris Avrukh (Israel) and Bartek Macieja (Poland) also played, and the world’s youngest GM, Sam Sevian (USA).
Two young players who may be playing for the World Championship in a decade or so are Russian Ilya Makoveev and Uzbek Nodirbek Abdusattorov. Makoveev recently turned nine and has won European and World titles in his age group, often with a perfect score!
Nodirbek Abdusattorov of Uzbekistan, at the age of only nine, defeated two grandmasters in the Tashkent Open May last year (Andrey Zhigalko 2600 and Rustam Khusnutdinov 2495), making the 2012 World Youth U8 Champion his country’s best hope for a potential World Champion. He is the strongest nine-year-old ever and is already rated over 2400!
Carissa Yip, 11, is America’s youngest female chess master and a future women’s champion. She also won over GM Alexander Ivanov 2545 in the New England Open last year.

Friday, June 12, 2015

Pestaño: Wala diay maghikog tungod napilde sa chess

 Thursday, June 11, 2015
NAAY dies anyos nga bata nga niambak sa second floor sa ilang eskwelahan ug namatay human magkalalis sa iyang kontra kay napilde kuno sa chess.
Ang ngalan sa grade 5 nga estudyante wala gihatag sa media (VR lang) pero nahitabo ni sa Grant School sa Dumont, New Jersey sa miaging buwan.
Nagsuwat ang bata una miambak ug gihatag sa usa ka aide nga ang iyang reklamo: wala kuno misulti ug “checkmate” ang iya kontra ug gikaon lang dayon ang iya king.
Ang suwat dili kuno suicide note matod pa sa pulis.
Si Corey Schlosser, 27, nga naa anak sa indergarten sa eskwelahan misulti nga   ‘I was scared and just freaked out. I don’t know how something like this could happen, especially at a school. They’re supposed to be protecting our children.’
Apan naa psychologist, David Miller, nga nakasuwat ug libro bahin adolescent suicide mi komentaryo nga “Suicide, we’re learning, is not as sometimes widely believed, an impulsive act. Most people who are suicidal have thought about this and have communicated it to other people. It sounds like that’s the case here as well.”
Ang bata nasuko ug giaway ang iya kontra ug nisulti nga “Something bad was going to happen to him. Do you want me to do something drastic?”
Pyschologist Jill Harkavy-Friedman sa American Foundation for Suicide Prevention (AFPR), misulti sa NJ Media nga talagsaon ra ang pre-adolescent suicides.
kadaghanan naa undiagnosed problema sa utok. “It doesn’t just come out of the blue .It often comes from long-standing contributors and then other risk factors that are like triggers — like having a fight or getting a bad grade.”
Sa imbestigasyon sa pulis, ang bata bag.o lang miabot gikan sa Russia ug naglisud ug adjust sa eskwelahan. Ingon sa mga empleyado sa eskwelahan wala sia uban mokaon sa lunch break ug sia lang usa. Giingnan pud sia sa iyang mga classmates nga dili sia makaduwa ug chess nila pero gibadlong sila sa lunch aide. Giingnan sila nga paapilon si VR sa ilang mga dua.
Misulti pud ang iyang classmates nga katulo kuno mihulga si VR nga moambak sa bentana pero abi nila “messing around” lang.
Ingon ang mga experts nga talagsaon ra kaayo ang paghikog sa mga elementary students. Sa 2013, 41,000 ang naghikug sa Amerika pero 17 ra ang under 14. Kadaghanan dili sad sa eskwelahan atubangan sa iyang mga classmates ug adto sa ilang balay pinaagi sa pagbitay.
Dili klaro kung si VR naa psychiatric treatment. Dili man mo komentaryo ang iya pamilya ug gidili sad sa federal law ang pagpagawas ani sa media. (

Pestaño: Australia eyes compulsory chess in schools

 Friday, June 12, 2015
COULD a humble board game improve school performance and play a role in driving a country’s economy?
Economist and former Liberal advisor John Adams thinks so and is heading a push to make chess a compulsory part of the national curriculum.
“The Gonski report clearly outlined that the performance of Australian school children, based on the OECD’s Programme for International Student Assessment, has been in decline since 2000 across mathematics, science and reading,” he said.
He points out that chess is already a part of the curriculum in more than 40 countries worldwide and is already implemented in some schools in Australia with evidence that the game is an effective teaching tool.
“In some Australian primary and secondary schools, chess is being taught by full or part-time chess teachers as part of the school’s curriculum or co-curriculum,” Adams said. “I have been amazed at the teachers’ stories, particularly the outcomes they say have been achieved from chess instruction and the transformational effects it has had on the children.”
He adds, “To compete in a knowledge-based and high-tech global economy, Australia will require a workforce that has not only greater skills but greater intellectual prowess based on superior analytical and cognitive abilities.”
Julia Eileen Gillard was Prime Minister of Australia from 2010 to 2013. She wanted to make Australia’s education system in the top 5 in the world by 2025.
Australia’s results have been appalling in recent tests however. In 2011, Australia participated in PIRLS (Progress in International Reading Literacy Study) in which children throughout the world in grade four had their reading abilities evaluated. Australia ranked 27th out of 48 countries, behind every other English-speaking country in the world!
Russia, which ranked second in the PIRLS test, has long been using chess in their education system with astounding results. Chess as an educational tool has been scientifically proven to have limitless benefits academically, psychologically and socially.
Adams also said that “For us to be globally competitive but also to increase our living standards, we will have to compete in the knowledge economy with a greater level of complexity, particularly around high-tech innovation and manufacturing.” The future belongs to the ability of children and their training in school.
Playing chess regularly teaches children of all ages that each decision they make needs to be carefully thought out and viewed from a long term point of view. This is particularly relevant now as teens have problems with drugs and alcohol.
In 2009, President Gloria Macapoagal Arroyo issued an executive order to include chess in schools. As a result, a memorandum of agreement was signed between NCFP president Prospero Pichay and then DepEd Secretary Jesli Lapus to implement the program and a National Chess Academy was supposed to be created.
However, there has been no progress made and the present administration does not have the foresight or the inclination at the highest level. The MOA is still technically in place though and GMs Eugene Torre, Jayson Gonzales , Pichay and especially Armin Luistro have their work cut out for them.
The chess leader here in Cebu, Bodjie Lim, has informed me that they have taken note of Marie Ernestine historic decision to include chess in the curriculum here in Cebu for Grades 3,4,5 and 6.
Apparently the biggest problem is the lack of competent teachers to implement it on a nationwide basis. That is a lame excuse though as Arroyo signed the executive order six years ago.

Friday, June 5, 2015

Pestaño: Caruana, Nakamura top grand prix qualifiers

 Friday, June 05, 2015
THE Fide Grand Prix 2014–15 is a series of four tournaments that form part of the qualification cycle for the 2016 world championship. The top two finishers will qualify to the 2016 candidates tournament, which consists of 16 players.
Fide announced the 11 qualifiers as per regulations, with four more nominees from the organizers and one from the Fide president. The players will be required to play three legs—comprising 12 players per leg.
The players were Dmitry Andreikin (Russia), Evgeny Tomashevsky (Russia), Maxime Vachier-Lagrave (France), Fabiano Caruana (formerly Italy but now USA), Alexander Grischuk (Russia), Hikaru Nakamura (USA), Sergey Karjakin (Russia), Leinier Domínguez (Cuba), Shakhriyar Mamedyarov (Azerbaijan), Boris Gelfand (Israel), Peter Svidler (Russia)
The organizers’ nominees were Dmitry Jakovenko (Russia), Teimour Radjabov (Azerbaijan), Rustam Kasimdzhanov (Uzbekistan) and Baadur Jobava (Georgia).
Anish Giri (Netherlands) was nominated by the Fide president. When the list was announced last year, Wesley So would have been included. However, he was not released (or ignored) by the National Chess Federation of the Philippines when he transferred to the USA.
However, Wesley will still have a chance to challenge for the world championship as he will be playing in the World Cup. The 2015 World Cup is an important part of the 2014-16 world championship Cycle as the top two qualify to the 2016 Candidates. The WC15 will take place in Baku, Ajerbaijan from Sept. 10 to Oct. 4, 2015.
The total prize money is 120,000 Euros in every Grand Prix. The champion got 20,000 Euro and 170 points, while the second placer got 15,000 Euros and 140 points.
The third placer earned 13,000 Euros and 110 points. Every leg had 12 players so everybody won some money.
In the first leg played in Baku, Azerbaijan, last 0ct. 1 to 15, 2014, the winners were Caruana and Gelfand who were tied. The second leg in Tashkent, Uzbekistan was won by Dmitry Andreikin. The third leg in Tbilisi, Georgia last Feb. 14 to 28 was won by Evgeny Tomashevsky. The fourth and final leg saw a tie for first among Caruana, Nakamura and Jakovenko. It was played in Khanty-Mansiyk, Russia last May 12 to 26.
After all the points were counted, Caruana and Nakamura were declared the Grand Prix qualifiers.
At the beginning of the 2014-15 Fide Grand Prix cycle there was just one American attempting to qualify for the candidates tournament but by the end of the series, two American qualified. As previously reported, American-born Fabiano Caruana changed federations mid-cycle to once again represent the U.S.
Wesley So is continually improving and will be a dangerous opponent for anyone. He will also join the U.S. Team for the 2016 Chess Olympiad in Azerbaijan, forming the strongest American team of all time.
Cepca. We had our monthly tournament last Sunday and the winners in the A group were Jimmy Ty Jr and NM Arnold Cadiz respectively. In the B section, Jojo Paredes prevailed followed by a tie for second and third between Edwin Cablao and new member Michael Ventulan.
Michael is just 26 years old and is a BS Computer Science graduate of AMA Computer Learning Center in Tacloban City. He is connected as technical support engineer of Convergys (Comcast account) in IT Park, Lahug.
He Loves to solve chess puzzles online and was a former member of Leyte-Samar Chess Club in Tacloban City and Naval Chess Club as well. He was also a three-time champion of his school.
VP of Cepca Marvynne Guardiana will sponsor the cash prizes for the month of June. Many thanks Vin!