Sunday, January 10, 2010

1st ever Battle of Asian Grandmasters?

It's 2010 and one of our New Year's resolution aside from voting wisely is not to get "caught" again in another media hypes. We're still yet to recover from the embarrassment of the so called "Wesley So vs Eugenio Torre one million pesos chess challenge" and the so called world record breaking simultaneous event (against 600!), the "serious" bid of the country to host the 2012 and 2014 Chess Olympiad, then of our failure to send a delegation for the all important world youth chess championship held in Turkey. Remember? Digging into the archives of this blog, I can't help but grin and scratch my head. So much have been said and nothing happens.

But anyway, on to the topic, I say we heard it already last year and we're hearing it again this year. The so called "Battle of Asian Grandmastes" as reported by Marlon Bernardino below first brought to our attention by no other than Quezon City Hon. councilor Anton E Inton Jr during the inauguration of the first Barley Rapid chess tournament held last February 2009 at Gateway Mall also in Quezon City. I was on the spot when I heard it announced. Of course everyone was excited and in fact it drew a lot of applause from the players and fans alike who were present in the playing hall. For starters, you will find here our last year's post regarding the proposed tournament that originally billed as "Quezon City, the Philippines vs Asia" an exhibition chess tournament where the best of Filipino masters will try to pit their skills against the strongest players the organizers could possibly get from all over Asia. That post of ours proves we're not lacking in information about these issues. The said tournament should have been taken place at the end of 2009. As we know, 2009 is over and no such tournament took place.

Although we are disappointed that such event didn't happen, it is always great to hear that there are still many people who are bent on hosting such events here in the Philippines. We are still blessed for having chess supporters, few they are, but still blessed just the same. Better have than never. Everything starts in a dream anyway. Our point here is, with the Philippines, who is also hosting big tournaments this 2010 like 2010 Asian Continental Individual men’s and women’s championships on April 20-30 and the ASEAN age-group chess tournament on June 4-13 both at the Subic Exhibition and Convention Center, how come it will be possible to host the Battle of Asian Grandmaster after this events will remain to be seen.

But to shed some light, at the last 3rd Gathering of te Knights and Kings, GM Joey Antonio himself reiterated that the 1st ever Battle of Asian Grandmaster is already in the work and will likely happen later this year. You've got a shed of hope there.



MANILA, PHILIPPINES--- Buoyed by the success of the staging of the Battle of the Grandmaster in Manila (2008) and Dapitan City (2009), a bigger and better chess tournament in the works before the year end.

This was bared by National Chess Federation of the Philippines (NCFP) president/chairman Prospero “Butch” Pichay Jr. in an interview of this writer on Friday at the Synchopados Restaurant in Malate in the celebration of Christmas Party hosted by Pichay.

Dubbed as “Battle of the Asian Grandmaster”, the Filipino crazy chess fanatics will chance to see the participation of the invited foreign Asian grandmasters.

“It’s like an Asian Games,” said the Local Water Utilities Administration (LWUA) chairman Pichay as also the newly appointed Presidential Political adviser.

But before the hosting of the first-ever Battle of the Asian Grandmaster, the country will host the 2010 Asian Continental Individual men’s and women’s championships on April 20-30 and the ASEAN age-group chess tournament on June 4-13 both at the Subic Exhibition and Convention Center.

Pichay also will send GMs Wesley So, Rogelio “Joey” Antonio Jr. and Darwin Laylo in the forthcoming Aeroflot International chess tournament set next month in Moscow, Russia. The triumvirate also the Philippine representative in the 2009 World Chess Cup in Khanty, Mansiyk, Russia. In this prestigious event, the 16-year-old So, upset heavyweights Vassily Ivanchuk of Ukraine and Gata Kamsky of the United States. MARLON BERNARDINO

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

This is exactly what happens when the sport you love is at the mercy of politicians -- most of them make empty promises. Sad but true.