Thursday, August 18, 2011
The Malaysian Chess Festival just kicked off minutes ago. Three different tournaments - The Malaysia Open, The Malaysia Chess Challenge, and International Seniors Open, are held concurrently at the Midvalley Cititel Hotel.
In the Malaysia Chess Challenge, there are 43 participants based on the above Round 1 pairing. 32 are Malaysians and the other eleven are foreigners including one WIM from Philippine. Can WIM Cristine Rose Mariano who is seeded sixth continue her country dominance of being the champion consecutively for the past three years? In 2008, the unrated Leonardo Carlos emerged champion from seven Filipino players. In 2009, it was Samson Jr who became the champion. Not only that, the Filipino players also were both the first and second runner ups. Last year (2010), the Philippines sole representative, Luffe Magdalaga, won the Ambank Challenge by pipping an Indian player by better tie break. Or will the top seed, 17-year-old Uzbekistani named Sarvinoz Kurbonboeva emerge champion? We have to wait until the championship is over, right?, to find out.
The Malaysian players is led by Dr Zaidan Zulkipli. Along with Abdullah Che Hassan, CM Mohd Fadli Zakaria or better known as stonemaster, Masrin Erowan, Kaushal Khandar and Muhd Syazwan Zulkifli, he will lead the Malaysian youngsters to spice up the event.
BEST OF LUCK to all the participants. Have fun playing chess and enjoy the Malaysian Chess Festival!