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St Jago make right moves for chess title in ISSA all-island championship

Published:Wednesday | March 25, 2015 | 12:00 AM


Defending champions St Jago High won the 2015 Petroleum Corporation of Jamaica (PCJ) Group National Schools Chess Championship, a convincing 3-1 victory over Calabar High in the all-island final at PCJ Auditorium, New Kingston.

St Jago took the early lead when Joshua Christie easily dispatched Dwayne Campbell on board two.

Despite a concerted effort from Calabar's Malik Curriah, St Jago eventually took an unassailable 3-0 lead with wins on Boards Three and Four.

It was left up to Calabar's board one player, national master Shreyas Smith, to prevent a clean sweep when he went up against national master Alistair Walker, who had defeated him when the two met in last year's final.

Smith avenged the prior loss as he eventually outplayed Walker in an endgame where both players ended up with less than five minutes on their clock.

Sixth nat'l title

However, the day belonged to St Jago, who won their sixth national title, the PCJ Group Trophy, and a cash prize of $150,000, courtesy of PCJ and its subsidiary, Petrojam.

The team of Walker, Joshua Christie, Michael Christie and Akeem Brown also copped most of the categories awards, including the best rural area team, best board two (Christie), best board three (Christie), best board four (Brown) and best coach, national master Mikhail Solomon.

The Calabar team of Smith, Dwayne Campbell, Malik Curriah and Obrian Johnson took home the runner-up trophy and Corporate Area champions trophy, as well as the board-one prize and Most Valuable Player award which both went to Shreyas Smith.