Khan, Callender leading Chess Grand Prix 2 tournament
Candidate Master (CM) Taffin Khan is leading the Open category of the Grand Prix Two chess tournament, while reigning National Women’s Champion Jessica Callender is leading the female side after 4 rounds of competition ended on Sunday, February 4th 2024 at the National Stadium.
With 25 players in the Open and 14 in the Female categories, the tournament, sponsored by International Import and Supplies Inc., delivered riveting gameplay and strategic brilliance, setting the stage for the remaining rounds of the eight-round competition this weekend.
The tournament witnessed some competitive form from National Open champion Taffin Khan, currently on a hot streak of four points after 4 games. Khan is one of the few local players who have earned the Candidate Master title.
Junior player Sachin Pitamber, in close pursuit with 3.5 points, battled to a draw in his second round with veteran player Loris Nathoo. Neither of these two players was able to make significant inroads to exploit each other’s position, and the two opponents agreed to a draw after less than 30 moves.
Standing in third position with 3 points is FM Anthony Drayton, whose only defeat came at the hands of Taffin Khan. Drayton holds the FIDE Master Title. Also holding strong with 3 points each are junior player Kyle Couchman and newly minted senior Ethan Lee.
Junior player Kyle Couchman prevailed with an upset victory over his senior counterpart Ronuel Greenidge in their Round 2 match. Couchman began a series of Queen manoeuvres, assisted by a few pawns, to attack and entrap Greenidge’s King. Greenidge was unable to save his monarch from checkmate and resigned, giving his much younger opponent the inevitable win.
An eventful battle ensued between experienced opponents Loris Nathoo and Ronuel Greenidge in Round 3, after both ‘castled’ their King on opposite sides of the board. That paved the way for a wild confrontation between the two, as they both became fixated on invading each other’s territory with their forces. Greenidge claimed the win after he managed to weaken and overwhelm his opponent.
The Women’s Category was simply a display of exceptional talent, represented by fourteen contenders vying for supremacy. Notably present are Jessica Callender in the lead with 3.5 points, Aditi Joshi, who recently won the Under-14 Girls title and is playing at an advanced level, is holding on to her number two spot. Junior player Ciel Clement is in third position, with Sasha Shariff in the number four spot.
Shazeeda Rahim is quickly moving up the rankings after a late start in the tournament.
The Grand Prix is supported by tournament sponsor International Import & Supplies, which provides quality products and superior and sustainable construction services, and is committed to the welfare of society and community assistance and development. The Guyana Chess Federation is proud to be associated with them, and applauds their efforts and ideals.
As the competition intensifies, anticipation mounts for the final rounds scheduled for this weekend at the Guyana National Stadium, Providence. Stay updated on tournament details and player statistics by following us on Facebook, and visiting our website at guyanachess.gy.