Pestaño: Colonnade Mall Chess Grand Prix

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Thursday, October 13, 2011

NEXT weekend, Oct. 21 to 23, the New Colonnade Mall in association with the Cebu Executives and Professionals Association (Cepca) will be sponsoring a chess tournament that will be open to all players, including ladies and kiddies as well as Cepca members.

The theme of the event is “Push pawns, not drugs” and the format is nine rounds Swiss with a time control of one hour per player, play to finish. All games will be played at Oriente Colonnade Mall along Colon St.

This tournament will be sanctioned by the National Chess Federation of the Philippines (NCFP) and all participants will be accorded NCFP Ratings after the tournament.


The champion will take home P5,000 and the first runner-up will get P3,000.There will be prizes up to the 10th placer. In addition, the top finishers of the ladies, kiddies, as well as Cepca members, will get special prizes.

There will be three games per day starting at 10 a.m. followed by a break and will resume at 1 p.m. The final game of the day will be at 3:30 p.m.

Registration will be P150 for all players, including Cepca members, while ladies and
kiddies will pay only P75.

As there might be a shortage of chess clocks and sets, those who bring their own clocks and sets will get a discount of P50 from the registration fee.

This is a project of the new and renovated Colonnade Mall management, and organized by Cepca, under its new president Jojo Muralla to promote the royal game in Cebu. The new officers of Cepca will also have its induction today.

This is a Grand Prix tournament, meaning it will be a series of monthly contests followed by quarterly tournaments and a grand final in October next year.

These tournaments will surely make Cebu the center of chess activities in the country as no other place in the Philippines has such a program.

Grand Slam. Just like golf and tennis, chess also has its own grand slam and it is accorded the highest importance by Fide in the chess calendar.

The Fourth Grand Slam Masters final has just concluded and continuing the new trend of sharing the event with a partner city, the organizers in Bilbao, Spain have chosen São Paulo this year to host the first half.

Magnus Carlsen won after beating Vassily Ivanchuk 1.5-0.5 in a blitz play-off. Carlsen had 15 points, the same score as Ivanchuk who finished second.

Finishing behind them were Levon Aronian, world champion Vishy Anand and Hikaru Nakamura, who shared third place with 12 points each. The Spanish Francisco Vallejo had 10 points.

Scoring was “football” style, meaning three points for a win and one point for a draw.

The format was double-round robin with a time control of 90 minutes for the first 40 moves, plus 30 minutes and 10 seconds per move starting with the 1st move

This is the strongest tournament for this year as the top three players —Carlsen, Anand and Aronian—all have ratings above 2800 and the other three are over 2700.

Carlsen dominated the Bilbao half of the final masters and finished level with Vassily Ivanchuk, who played with excellent results in Sao Paolo. Carlsen could have won the event with a normal scoring system but still won with the football scoring.

Ivanchuk also played a fine tournament but his play was more uneven. The big news of the tourney was when he and his wife got mugged as he was leaving Sao Paolo on the way to the airport.

Nakamura and Anand are obviously disappointed at the results and Aronian was below par and not his usual self. His win against Anand was one of his few bright spots.

As for Francisco Vallejo Pons, he was targeted every round. He’s a good and very strong player but the others were just better.


Published in the Sun.Star Cebu newspaper on October 14, 2011.


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