Friday, December 30, 2011

Malaysian Players At Singapore International Chess Festival (SIFC)

Today is Friday. It is the second last day of the year 2011. The new year 2012 will emerge in three more days.

About fourty (40) Malaysian chess players are currently participating in their final chess tournament in the year 2011. The tournament is held in Singapore. The name of the tournament is Singapore International Chess Festival  or its abbreviated name, SIFC. Most of them are accompanied by their parents. The majority of them are using their own money for the expense that includes travelling, lodging, food and fees. Since the Sing dollar (SGD) is more than twice higher than the Malaysian Ringgit (MYR) ofcourse the expense is not cheap. Just imagine, the entry fees for a player in the youth categories is MYR 610 (SGD 250). It is much more than the entry fees for both Fikri and Anis in the Penang Heritage City International tournament which is only MYR 400.


GiLoCatur has to fork out MYR 750 each for travelling and lodging and another MYR 300 for food. That is MYR 1, 800 in total not including the entry fees. Adding the fees, GiLoCatur spent MYR 2,200 for both Fikri and Anis to participate in the Penang Open. So, just imagine how much money the parents of the Malaysian chess juniors have to spend to participate in the SIFC. 

So, GiLoCatur salutes all the dedicated Malaysian chess parents who are in Singapore accompanying their chess playing children.

Enough for that. Let's check the performance of the Malaysian chess players after Round 6 had completed. Three more rounds to go. Round 7 will begin in an hour while Round 8 starts at 4.00 in the afternoon. The final round will be played tomorrow morning. Tomorrow is the last day of 2011.

Under 17 category

Seven (7) Malaysian boys and one girl participate in this category. In the boys section, three of our chess juniors are in the top 5 after Round 6. Nabil Azman Hisham who just won the recent NJCC is ranked second trailing  a Filipino player named Medina, Vince Angelo 1/2 point. His chess buddy, Syakir Shazmeer, is third with the same point (4.5/6) but with lower tie break. It is Syakir's first chess tournament after his SPM exam. Tan Jun Feng is fifth in the ranking list with 4/6 point. The other four Malaysian players are Liew Ken Yew, Lim Chuin Khai, Dinesh Siddharthan and Lim Joshua. Chuin Khai has travelled from his hometown Penang to KL and to Singapore. In Penang, he played against Fikri while in KL he played against Fahim.

SIFC U17 Boys 

In Round 7, Syakir will try to stop Medina on the top board while Nabil is paired with another Malaysian player, Jun Feng. Will Syakir succeed to outplay his Filipino opponent? Can Jun Feng beat the new National Junior Master (NJM)? Click here to find out later.

SIFC U17 Girls
Olivia, the daughter of Candidate Master Collin Madhavan, is the sole Malaysian player in the girls section. She is one of the nine only participants in this category. She scores 1.5/6 points in the Girls Under 17 category where two unrated Filipino players are dominating.

Under 14 category

In the boys section there are 43 participants which includes three Fide Masters while only 21 in the girls category. After Round 6, Irfan Haqqim Azhar is the best Malaysian player in the boys U14 category at the fifth place with 4/6 points leading nine (9) other Malaysians - Faizal Roslan, Ooi Zhi Yang, Yap Wan Lin, Daniel Iskandar Noor Akbar, Ong Wei Bin, Darrel Yap, Lim Bing Yi, Ang Zhen Yuan and Lim Jun Yi. In Round 7, Irfan is paired against Wan Lin at Table 4 playing black. At Table 3, Zhi Yang will play white against higher-rated Thai opponent, Khumnokeaw Tupfah. While Faizal is challenged by a Singaporean player at Table 5. At the top board, it is an FM battle between the top two seeds. FM Paulo Bersamina, the current leader with perfect 6/6 score, will play black against Vietnamese FM, Tran Tuan Minh. Would you like to know their results? Click here a couple of hours later, okay!

SIFC U14 Boys - Top 20

It is glad to know that the girls section are dominated by Malaysian players as per shown by below Rank after Round 6 picture. WFM Nur Najiha Azman (below picture) is leading with 5/6 points. While WNM Tan Li Ting is second with same score but lower tie break. Both of them drew against each other in the third round and against the top seed, a Filipino player named Marie Antoinette San Diego.

WFM Nur Najiha

Two other Malaysian girls in this category are Kelly Lim Pei Ying and Tan Jia Yun. Kelly who had participated in both the Penang Open and NJCC like Najiha drew four games and won one to score 3/6 points. Meanwhile Jia Yun scores 2.5/6 points. 

SIFC U14 Girls

In Round 7, both Najiha and Li Ting play white against their respective opponent on the top two boards. GiLoCatur wishes them Best of Luck to make Malaysia proud in this event. Here is the link to check on their results.

*****  9.23am : GiLoCatur needs to rest for a while to have breakfast. *****

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