Wednesday, 18 December 2019 11:21

Crossroads Hotel in Lilongwe becomes the metropolis of National chess championships this weekend in a tournament that has attracted 2 Fide Masters (FMs) and 7 Candidate Masters (CMs).

A total of forty five (45) players are expected in a  tourney that runs from December 19-22, and the ultimate prize is qualification to the World Chess Olympiad, due in Moscow, Russia, in August 2020.

Highest rated open section: FM Joseph Mwale Highest rated Ladies section: Desiderata Nkhoma


In the open section, Fide Masters Joseph Mwale and Gerald Mphungu are available, while a hoarde of Candidate Masters including defending champion Chiletso Chipanga are also on show. In this category, thirty (30) players will tussle for honours. However, sixteen players will book a ticket to the next stage in April, whereby top four winners after Easter tourney will go to Russia.

In the Ladies category, Woman Fide Master (WFM) Linda Chaononga has failed to make the cut, based on personal commitments. That paves the stage for other National team players like Desiderata Nkhoma, Tupokiwe Msukwa and WCM Ellen Mpinganjira to battle for gold. They will be up against a bunch of strong players ready to prove a point. Fifteen players will square off in this category.
Top ten ladies will compete in April and four will make it to Russia.

The champions of both Open and Ladies section this weekend at Crossroads automatically grabs a spot to Olympiad.
The prize structure is MK250.000, MK150.000 & MK75.000 for first to third positions in the Open section.

In the Ladies section the prizes are MK150.000, MK100.000 and MK50.000 respectively. There will also be glittering trophies and medals for the winners.
The Chief Arbiter is International Arbiter (IA) Gilton Mkumbwa who will be assisted by Fide Arbiter Isaac Mumba and National Arbiter Leonard M'bwana.
Nine rounds will be played across the four days. Meanwhile, Chessam President Susan Namangale has hailed Crossroads Hotel for hosting the National championship for a second year running.

By: Chimthere Alfred
(Chessam Publicist)

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