This was a schools chess individuals chess tournament a second edition after the first one was held in Gaborone, Botswana last year. The two best players from Zimbabwe played for the under 11 girls category. They squared off in the first round which was a pulsating.
Refiloe had the white pieces, she played some attacking chess which Rumbidzai Mawire responded by the Sicilian Dragon variation and eventually Refiloe won the game after the end game. Refiloe Mudodo never lost a game., she went on to win against Mwangali Esther of Uganda in round 2, Refilwe Gabatshwarwe of Botswana one of the tournament favourites in round 3, Naome Mwale of Zambia in round 4, Vedhika Sesshadi of Kenya in round 5, Catherine Phiri of Zambia, Naiya Gosrani of Kenya in round 7, and Horn Lure of Namibia in round 8. She then went on to draw her final round game against WCM Lisa Brugman of South Africa. To cap a fine performance in the under 11 girls category. Rumbidzai Mawire only lost to her rival Refiloe Mudodo and never looked back in round 2 to round 9 of the tourney. AShe won her round two game against Catherine Phiri with the white pieces, in round 3 she defeated Naiya Gosrani of Kenya, Lure Horn of Namibia was another culprit who lost to Rumbidzai in round 4,in round 5 she defeated WCM Lisa Brugman of South Africa in an interesting King’s Indian defence which she played very well. in round 6 she defeated Vedhika Seshadi of Kenya before dismissing Mwangala Esther of Uganda in round 7.
She went on to play one of the tournament’s favourites Refilwe Gabatshwarwe in a subtle game which produced a lot of fireworks on the chess board in which Rumbidzai Mawire’s King’s Indian defence prevailed over the London System which is also Rumbidzai Mawire’s reportoire. This game ensured that Rumbidzai got a silver medal before the final game which she drew against Mwale Naome of Zambia in round 9. Refiloe Mudodo won the section of the under 11 girls section with 8,5 points out of 9 games winning a gold medal and a Women Candidate Master Title, Rumbidzai Mawire won a silver medal as well as a WCM Title with 7,5 points out of 9 games of play. This was the first time that the Zimbabwean players collected a gold and silver medal in the same section since the inception of the tournament.
Tawananyasha Mawire the brother to Rumbidzai Mawire came out with 3,5 points out of 9 games after losing to his rival Tinaye Madamombe who prevailed and finished with 5 points in the under 9 boys category. Panashe Zimbili came 4th in the under 13 girls category with 6 points. Matthew Mhlanga finished with 5 points out of 9 games in the under 13 boys, while Cassim Kasimu finished with 5,5 points. In a game which they played ( Matthew and Casim), Casim won.Madamombe Tinaye lost some won games, but the boy has a lot of
Madamombe Tinaye lost some won games, but the boy has a lot of potential and can pull some triggers next time when he plays in the future tournaments. Anotida Madamombe played for the under 9 category after the age groups were merged to form a single group, showing that this tourney was poorly attended. However the youthful team put up a spirited performance against some best playing nations in Africa. Eight countries took part in this tourney including Zimbabwe. The other countries are: Namibia, Botswana, Uganda, Malawi, Kenya and the hosts Zambia.The youthful Zimbabwe team was accompanied by their parents, some from the secondary as well as primary school the likes of Madaka could not make it after there was no cabinet approval for them to travel to Zambia.The likes of Roy Mwadzura, Panashe Chimbwanda, and Kudakwashe Zimbowa could not travel. Otherwise we could have seen a lot of interesting games had we send more players for this tourney.
In the under 15 and 17 both boys and girls Zimbabwe never had any representative. FA Simbarashe Murimi was one of the Arbiters at the event which is also a good challenge for our Arbiters. Lawrence Tavagwisa played a pivotal role in the preparation for our silver medalist Rumbidzai Mawire and all the parents who accompanied the youthful team all the way to Lusaka , Zambia. Zimbabwe International Open is around the corner, more chess as we end and begin another year!
Yours truly wishes you a merry Christmas and a prosperous NewPost published in: Sport