Anthony Drayton reflects on his year …hopes to accomplish more in 2019

By Timothy Jaikarran

As 2018 comes to a close and 2019 quickly approaches, Guyana’s highest rated chess player, FIDE Master Anthony Drayton is reflecting on the accomplishments he has made for the year and the steps he is taking to climb to the top in his career.
According to his FIDE ratings, Drayton is Guyana’s top player and at the age of 24, he has the highest ELO rating of 2030. In an exclusive interview with Guyana Times Sport, when asked how he viewed his current year, Drayton said, “Well, for 2018, it’s been very good. The starting of the year I won the qualifying tournament for the national championship and got second in the championship after tiebreaker between me and Wendell Meusa. After that, I went on to play in my first subzonals

Anthony Drayton

that was held in Jamaica, where I accumulated six points which got me elected for the FIDE master title ,while bringing 14th out of 76 players with my starting rank at 56th in that tournament. Shortly after that, I went to Barbados to gain my FIDE instructor title in Barbados, which I am now a certified (National instructor). On top of that, our country participated in the 43rd Chess Olympiad, that is when I accumulated the points again for the FIDE master title, making me the first FIDE master (FM) for Guyana and also the highest-ever rated chess player ever for Guyana, which is 2030 currently.”
According to Drayton, he is ecstatic about his accomplishments. However, while it does feel good, he did not do it for himself, but for his country and other players, so one day young players can surpass him and reach higher levels. He also went on to state that achieving such a feat was never easy, but he has always had the talent for the game and great analytical abilities, as he learnt from the masters such as Bobby Fisher, Garry Kasparov, M Botvinick and current number one Magnus Carlsen. He also did not shy away from the fact that he is grateful to one of Guyana’s top powerlifting champions, Carlos Peterson who taught him the game. He also relayed that he wanted Guyana to have a youth chess programme whereby kids could learn chess at a very young age, and he hoped that every school could have a chess club.
In closing, Drayton said: “As for me, I’m just going to try and win some tournaments and raise my ratings as much as possible so I can one day move on to the next level.”