Wed | Sep 19, 2018

Smith, Lorne shine at Speed chess tourney

Published:Thursday | August 30, 2018 | 12:00 AM
Under-12 section players at last weekend's M.R. Games Chess Open at the University of the West Indies. In front, at left, is eventual winner Darren McKennis of Campion College. At right (front) is Ksenia Spaulding of Stella Maris Preparatory.

Chess Masters Shreyas Smith and Malaku Lorne dominated the M.R. Games Chess Open at the University of the West Indies last weekend. The tournament was the first event for the new entertainment business and was a resounding success.

The rapid section last Saturday saw 68 players battling over five rounds of games, with each player having 20 minutes and five-second increments each to finish. Smith, who was fresh off his victory at the Masters Knockout Invitational, had a remarkable start defeating national women's champion Krishna Gray, Nathan Hinds, and national master Andrew Mellace.

 

Demoralising loss

 

However, he suffered a demoralising loss to FIDE Master (FM) Marcus Joseph of Trinidad and Tobago in the fourth round. He was still able to recover and defeat FM Joshua Christie in the fifth round. There was a five-way tie for first place with four points, but Smith successfully captured the title on tiebreaks. Former national champion FM Warren Elliott placed second, followed by Malik Curriah, FM Malaku Lorne, and Akeem Brown, all finishing on four points. Woman candidate master Margoe Williams was the best female player.

In the Under-16 section , Nicholas Lyn took first with 4.5 points, followed by Adani Clarke, Raehana Brown, and Justin Watts in second, who all finished on 3.5 points. Daren McKennis captured the Under-12 section, when he equalled Jaden Shaw's 4.5 points, but was better on tiebreaks.

The blitz division, which took place on August 26, allotted four minutes with two-second increments to each player to complete the game. FIDE Master Malaku Lorne showcased a blistering start with a perfect eight points from eight games. However, he was set back and defeated by Andrew Mellace in an exciting 9th round clash.

FM Joshua Christie of St Jago High defeated Raheem Glaves in the 9th round to share first place. However, Lorne took the title on tiebreakers, having beaten Christie in their headto head third-round clash. Daren McKennis of Campion College and Christopher Lyn of Excelsior High were victorious in the Under-12 and Under-16 sections respectively.

International master (elect) and seven-time national champion Shane Matthews performed an intense and remarkable-timed simultaneous exhibition with 20 junior players. This involved playing all the players at the same time, with limited time for him to finish each game.

That learning experience for the junior players was also a fundraiser for charity. Part proceeds from the event are to be donated to the National Children's Home. The event was sponsored by PROVEN Wealth, Tastee Limited, The Gleaner, Marc Francis Ramsay & Company, and Guardian Life Limited.