Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Journal Online

So, Torre win as Pinoys stun IndiansPDFPrintE-mail
by Ed Andaya   
Monday, 22 November 2010 20:19
Standings after five rounds:

10 points -- China
8 -- Philippines
7 -- Kyrgyzstan
6 -- India, Qatar, Uzbekistan
5 -- Iran, Vietnam, Kazakhstan,  Iraq
4 -- Bangladesh, Mongolia, Korea
3 -- Maldives
2 -- Yemen
1 -- Jordan, Lebanon

GUANGZHOU, China --  On another  bleak day for the   Philippines  in  nearly  all  fronts,  GMs Wesley  So and  Eugene Torre put the smile  back on the Filipinos’ faces  in  the 16th Asian  Games  here Monday.

So, undoubtedly the  brightest  Filipino chess player  to emerge  in recent   years, outwitted GM   Pentala  Harikrishna in their  keenly-watched  board  one showdown  to lead the Filipinos to a morale-boosting 2.5-1.5  upset win  over  second seed  India in  the fifth  round of  the chess  competitions at the Guangzhou Chess Institute.

Torre,  the  most  recognizable figure in   local chess  since becoming Asia’s first-ever GM in 1974,  capped  the Filipinos’ big day when he defeated  GM B. Adhiban on  board four.

GM  Rogelio Antonio, Jr.  also  did his part by drawing with GM Krishnan Sasikiran in board two.

Only  GM John Paul Gomez, the hero in the Philippines’ 2.5-1.5 triumph  over  Kazakhstan  last Sunday,   did  not count as he lost  to GM  Surya  Shekhar Ganguly in  board three.

The  smashing  win  propelled the  sixth-seeded Filipinos to solo second place  behind top seed China with eight points on four wins and one loss  in the tough, nine-round competition which attracted 25 countries.

China trounced Iran, 3-1, behind  the victories of  GMs  Bu Xiangzhi  and Zhou Jianchao  over  GM  Homayoon Toufighi and IM  Ashgar Golizadeh in the lower boards

The  Chinese, who are widely favored  to  sweep the gold medals in both the men’s and women’s divisions, have now beaten all their five opponents, including the  Filipinos  in  the  third round.

National  Chess  Federation of the Philippines (NCFP) president/chairman  Prospero “Butch” Pichay had  kind words for the Filipino  chessers.

“They (Filipinos) are really making all of us proud right now,” said Pichay, who congratulated the  team  through delegation head/coach  Willie Abalos.

“The players  are performing to  expectations  even against  our traditionally-strong  Asian rivals.  I  like our chances now  even with still four  rounds left,” added Pichay.    

NCFP secretary-general and Tagaytay City Mayor Abraham "Bambol" Tolentino also congratulated the team, and urged them to continue to do well and bring  honors to the country.

The Filipinos’ sixth-round opponent is  former Russian republic  Uzbekistan,  which drew with Kazakhstan, 2.-2.

The Uzbeks are bannered by GM  Rustam Kasimdzhanov and  Anton Filippov.

Kasimdzhanov bagged the individual gold medal in the rapid chess  competitions with six wins and  three draws.

Overall,  So, Antonio and Torre have three points apiece, while  Gomez had two.

So and Torre had two wins and  two draws apiece, while Antonio had one win and four draws.

Gomez, the only  other player to  see action in  all five rounds so far,  had  one  win, two draws and two losses.

GM Darwin Laylo had 1-1 win-loss record.

No.10 seed Kyrgyzstan shocked  fourth seed Vietnam, 3.5-.5 to grab solo third place with seven points.

Unheralded  Algis Shukuraliev shocked  GM Le Quang Liem,   Nurdin  Samakov stunned GM  Nguyen  Ngoc Truong Son and Nasyr  Akylbelkov toppled GM Cao Sang for Kyrgyzstan’s three victories.

IM  Nguyen Huyn Minh Huy averted a  shutout when  he escaped with a draw against   FM Semetey  Tologontegin in board four.

In  other  fifth-round results,  Qatar edged  Bangladesh, 2.5-1.5; Iraq stopped Mongolia, 2.5-1.5; Korea nipped Maldives, 2.5-1.5;  and Yemen outclassed Jordan, 3.5-.5.  

India, Qatar and Uzbekistan now share fourth to sixth places with six points.    

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