The chess Olympiad is the place where every chess player aspires to be. This year’s biennial showpiece will be held in Tromso, Norway from 1st - 14th August and whoever qualifies to represent her country, delights in the presence of the world’s best!
From today, 30th April through to Sunday 4th May, at the Young Women’s Christian Association (YWCA) in Nairobi, the top 11 men and 11 ladies from the three- phase qualifying system, will be engaged in a separate round robin format to select the national team of five each to represent Kenya at the 41st Olympiad.
Each player will play 10 games, with a time control of 90 minutes per player to finish the game plus 30 seconds increment per move, from move one, and it promises to be a battle of all-round sound preparation, nerves and endurance.
In the men’s category, national champion Candidate Master (CM) Ben Magana will lead past Olympians Mehul Gohil, FIDE Master (FM) Martin Gateri, Joseph Atwoli, Steve Ouma and other qualifiers Jackson Kamau, Moses Andiwo, Brian Adorwa, Geoffrey Mulaga, George Nderitu and Yours Truly in the quest of being Kenya’s flag bearers.
Isabelle Asiema, Gweyani Jumba, Woman Candidate Master (WCM) Jane Wambugu, Purity Maina, Rose Wabuti, all past Olympians will battle it out with 14 year old national champion WCM Riya Shah, Saloni Karania, Elsie Omondi, Shefali Kachra, Winfred Thitu and Reanna Varsani for a slot on the team.
To avoid match fixing through off the board negotiations, the Bilbao scoring system (3 points for a win, 1 for a draw and 0 for a loss) shall apply.