Jamaican dominates chess tournament

Top Jamaican chess player FIDE Master Shane Matthews has won the 2012 Barbados Blitz Chess Championship with a stellar performance of nine wins form nine games.

Blitz chess is what Twenty20 is to cricket and is a fast and exciting form of the game in which each player tries to outwit his opponent within a maximum of five minutes per player.

Matthews, a former Jamaican national chess champion went into the tournament over the weekend at the Sugar Cane Mall on Roebuck Street, St Michael as the highest ranked player and defeated some of Barbados’s most promising players. He stated his intentions early, when in round two he defeated the second ranked player in the tournament, national representative FIDE Master Delisle Warner to hit the front alone to lead with two points. He then racked up a series of wins against top juniors Yutien Poon, Orlando Husbands and Kemp Lynch before cruising to victory in the latter couple of rounds with some comfortable victories.

In second place on seven points was current Under-20 national champion Kemp Lynch of the Graydon Sealy Secondary School. Lynch was in fine form and showed great maturity as he fought tenaciously only losing two games, to the eventual winner Matthews and Allon Richards of the Foundation School. Lynch dispatched a host of other top juniors as well as Warner in a much focused effort. His most exciting game being when he defeated current Sagicor Under-20 champion Orlando Husbands of The Lodge School with a mere two seconds remaining on his clock.

Placing third was Husbands on six points ahead of Warner on the tie-break, also on six. While in fourth and fifth respectively were Poon and Richards both on four and a half points.

Kyle Sandiford picked up the prize for the best Under-12 player on show, while Donna Murray won the best women’s prize.

The players relished the fine accommodation at the Sugar Cane Mall and will be returning there this weekend, for the 2012 National Rapid Chess Championships. Rapid chess is played with 30 minutes per player and is akin to 50 overs cricket. The tournament will be played over two days starting on November 10th at 2 p.m.

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