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28 April 2010

Wesley So falls, Antonio gains in Subic Chess

While Grandmaster (GM) Wesley So suffered his first defeat on Tuesday, GM Rogelio Antonio, Jr. kept the Philippine pride alive in the 7th round of 2010 Asian Individual Chess Championships in Subic, Olongapo City.

Antonio defeated Iranian Pouria Darini after 33 moves of the Sicilian Alapin at the Subic Exhibition and Convention Center. He improved his score to 4.5 points.

“I still have a good chance of making it with two more rounds left,” said Antonio, who is aiming to get another crack at the World Chess Cup.

Slots to the 2011 World Chess Cup await the top 5 finishers of the 9-round tournament organized by the National Chess Federation of the Philippines (NCFP).

However, leading RP bet So was defeated by GM Ni Hua of China.

So dropped his solo leadership and settled for a tie for 5th to 8th places with 5 points going into the final 2 rounds.

The 16-year-old chess whiz kid tried hard to squeeze out a win before yielding to Ni in marathon 74 moves of the Slav.

Several moves earlier, So even held a slight initiative against Ni but made several passive moves against Ni’s 2 connected rooks that turned the tide in the Chinese’s favor.

Other results

In other matches, GM Li Chao of China crushed compatriot GM Yu Yangyi, GM Abhijeet Gupta of India humbled countryman GM Gopal Narayanan Geetha and GM Ling Direng of China outclassed Bayarsaikhan Gundavaa of Mongolia to vault into a 4-way tie for the lead with Ni with 5.5 points.

GM John Paul Gomez, however, also suffered a loss on Tuesday to GM Zhou Jianchao of China. Gomez now has 4 points.

Filipino International Master (IM) Rolando Nolte, meantime, toppled GM Ziaur Rahman of Bangladesh in 43 moves of the Sicilian to improve to 4 points.

IM Ronald Dableo drew with GM Zhou Weiqi of China, IM Dronavalli Harika of India downed IM Barlo Nadera, GM Wen Yang bested Allan Macala, and IM Oliver Dimakiling beat Paulo James Florendo.

Rapid chess tilt

Meanwhile, Christian Arroyo emerged as the solo winner in the National Amateur Rapid chess championship, a side event of the Asian Championships, which was held over the weekend.

A mainstay of Far Eastern University under GM Jayson Gonzales, Arroyo finished with 5 wins and 2 draws to pocket the top prize of P10,000.

Sharing 2nd to 3rd places were Allan Cantonjos and Ryan Dungca, who finished with 5.5 points. They took home P7,000 each.

Merben Roque and Jerry Areque finished 4th and 5th, respectively. Completing the top 10 were Marlon Ricafort (6th), Sheider Nebato (7th), Ritchie Evangelista (8th), Joey Albert Florendo (9th) and Jerad Docena (10th).

The other awardees were Lourecel Hernandez (top unrated), Vince Angelo Medina (top kiddie) and Judith Pineda (top female). (Marlon Bernardino, ABSCBNnews.com)

Standings after 7 rounds:

5.5 points – H. Ni (China), C. Li (China), A. Gupta (India), L. Ding (China)

5 points – W. So (RP), K. Sasikiran (India), J. Zhou (China), R. Yu (China)

4.5 points – R. Antonio (RP), L.Q. Liem (Vietnam), E. Ghaemmaghami ( Iran), P. Harikrishna (India), T. Bakre (India), Y. Yu (China), G. Geetha (India), B. Gundavaa (Mongolia), Y. Wan (China), C. Zheng (China), D. Xiu (China), P. Sethuranan (India), D. Harika (India)

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