Saturday, March 28, 2009

Philippines Chess: So and Gomez Rise to the Top

GM chess: Streaking So downs Dableo By Roy Luarca Philippine Daily Inquirer First Posted 00:08:00 03/29/2009 DAPITAN CITY – Wesley So’s winning run in the Battle of Grandmasters here hasn’t been broken after all. After So downed International Master Ronald Dableo in the seventh round yesterday, his sixth round draw with fellow GM Rogelio “Joey” Antonio on Friday night was nullified by the organizing National Chess Federation of the Philippines. [Absolutely ridiculous! As if a rematch will result in a something other than a win for So? So they had a draw - So what? Har!] NCFP president Prospero “Butch” Pichay ordered that the So-Antonio match, which ended in a truce after 21 moves of a Scandinavian encounter, be replayed. Pichay cited an earlier NCFP ruling seeking to avoid early draws between players, especially those played in less than 30 moves, to ensure quality competition. The 15-year-old So’s systematic 26-move victory over Dableo in a French encounter pushed his pacesetting total to 12 points, excluding the outcome of his game with Antonio set to be played anew on March 30. “He (Dableo) made some weak moves that immobilized his forces,” said So, who moved closer to the P200,000 men’s division champion’s purse of the 11-round tournament being held at the Dapitan City Resort Hotel. GM John Paul Gomez, beat fellow Asian Chess Cup campaigner GM Darwin Laylo in 58 moves of a Gruenfeld to stay in contention with 9.0 points. International Master Julio Catalino Sadorra trounced IM Rolando Nolte in 48 moves of an English Opening to climb to 7.0 points in the company of GM Eugene Torre and IM Richard Bitoon, who agreed to a truce after 55 moves of a Sicilian Defense. In a late completed match, GM Jayson Gonzales triumphed over GM Mark Paragua in 31 moves of another English. In women’s play, WFM Shercila Cua drew with WFM Catherine Perena to keep top spot with 10 points. Other matches saw WNM Daisy Rivera and WNM Cristy Lamiel Bernales gain ground by besting Rida Young and WNM Rulp Ylem Jose, respectively. Rivera, an employee of Bingo Bonanza, improved to 9.0 points in a tie with WFM Sherily Cua, who was held to a draw by WIM Beverly Mendoza.

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