Pestaño: Cepca 26th anniversary open

THE roads for all chess players will lead to Robinsons Galleria this weekend for Cepca’s anniversary tournament. The format is nine rounds Swiss System Rapid with a time control of 25 minutes plus 5-second increments.

Registration will start at 11 a.m. and the tournament proper will start at 1 p.m. There will be four rounds on Saturday and five rounds on Sunday starting at 1 p.m.

The champion will receive P10,000 plus trophy and the second to fifth placers will get P7, 000, P4,000, P3,000 and P2,000 respectively. The sixth to 10th placers will receive P1,500 each and the 11th to 15th placers will get P1,000. The 16th to 26th placers get P500.

There will also be special prizes for top three kiddies (15-under) and top children (10-under) at P1,000, P700 and P500 for the top three. The top 3 Ladies will also get P1,500, P1000 and P500 respectively, while the top three Cepca members for both Groups A and B will get P1,500, P1,000 to P500.

The regular registration is P300, while the registration fees for the ladies and kiddies is P150. Cepca members will pay only P200.

MAJOR EVENTS. In the past weeks, there have been three international major tournaments starting almost at the same time. They are the recently-concluded Mikhail Tal Memorial tournament ,the Isle of Man Open and the 3rd Millionaires Chess.

The 10th Tal Memorial concluded last Oct. 6 and was a 10-player round robin format. This was rated a category 22 tournament as all the players were over 2700 and the average was rating 2760.

Ian Nepomniachtchi started with an excellent 4.5/6 but was unable to maintain the momentum as he finished with three draws. This allowed other players to make their move but it never worked out. Anish Giri, who trailed by only half a point, held a completely winning position, but a slip on move 41 cost him his advantage, and a draw ensued against Li Chao of china.

Nepomniachtchi was thus the winner for what is probably his greatest tournament result taking sole first in an elite field.

I was wondering why no Americans were playing in the Tal Memorial. Fabiano Caruana, Hikaru Nakamura and Wesley So played in the strongest Open tournament this year, Isle of Man Open.

Pavel Eljanov concluded his brilliant campaign with a final draw against Wesley. Although it was So’s birthday, Eljanov was not in a giving mood and his superb opening preparation gave him an easy draw. Caruana managed to level with him after beating Michael Adams in a big game, but came second on tiebreak.

Wesley was fourth and is now rated 2794 just six points short of his target of 2800 by yearend.

The third edition of Millionaire Chess was held in Atlantic City with a more modest entry fee, but the philosophy has not changed, with prizes for all that can be life-changing. Even the winner of the U1200 gets $4,800.Wesley won $100,000 in the first edition in 2014.

Dariusz Swiercz won first place and collected a clean $30,000. Not bad for a college student. Organizer GM Maurice Ashley anticipates that this will be be the final Millionaire Chess. Desired participation this year was 1,000+, but actual participation was an even 400.

SHELL CHESS. Here is a short report by KC Morala on the Shell tournament the other week. “University of Cebu student-athletes, Diego Caparino (seniors) and Chris Aldritz Pondoyo (juniors), nabbed two silver medals in the 24th Shell National Youth Active Chess Championships grand finals held at the SM Megamall Event Center over the weekend.

Other players from Cebu were Jerish John Velarde of Marie Ernestine School, who took fourth in the Kiddies category, Alphecca Gonzales of Danao School, Allan Pason and Esplanada of University of San Jose Recoletos, and Laila Nadera of University of San Carlos.”

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