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CM Wendell Meusa, Pooja Lam usurp Defending Champions to win National Titles

Pooja Lam vs Maliha Rajkumar

Open Championship

CM Wendell Meusa

Candidate Master Wendell Meusa dominated the Gaico National Open Chess Championship to earn the National Chess Champion title for 2022.

He finished the tournament on 8 points after nine rounds, just half of a point ahead of former National Champion Candidate Master Taffin Khan who finished the tournament in second place. Meusa’s only defeat came during the sixth round against Roberto Neto (5th place).

In 3rd and 4th place respectively is Fide Master Anthony Drayton (6.5 points) who won the qualifying tournament and Frankie Farley (5 points).

Loris Nathoo, Ethan Lee and Rai Sharma came in 6th, 7th and 8th with 4.5,4 and 3 points respectively.

Women’s Championship

Pooja Lam

In a close contest for the National Women's title, Pooja Lam emerged victorious. It was still anyone’s game up until the very last day of the KFC Guyana sponsored championship.

14-year-old Lam took the lead in Round 7 of the championship when she defeated Nellisha Johnson, who had been leading for the earlier part of the competition.

Lam managed to hold her position at the top of the ranking table to eventually win the tournament on 8 points after nine matches. She suffered no losses throughout the tournament, only conceding two draws – one against former women’s champion Sasha Shariff and another against Jessica Callender who won the qualifying tournament.

Shariff finished the tournament in 2nd place with 7 points. Johnson and Callender both finished on 6 points, but due to a direct encounter tie-break, Johnson finished 3rd and Callender finished 4th. In 5th place is 12 year old Anaya Lall who won four and drew one of her matches to finish on 4.5 points. Maliha Rajkumar, Adia Alphonso finished with 4 and 3.5 points respectively, while Waveney Johnson and Angel Rahim finished on 3 points each.

Players who were victorious in their respective tournaments will be rewarded at an official award ceremony hosted by the Guyana Chess Federation. Details for this will be released soon.

This event was the final qualifying event that served as part of the point-based system inclusive of results from the Grand Prix Tournaments to determine tenmember team to represent Guyana at the 44th Fide Chess Olympiad. The team that will represent Guyana in Chennai, India will be announced in the coming week.

The two 9 round Round Robin tournaments concluded on May 29 signaling the end of the back to back tournaments hosted by the GCF during the last three months.

The Guyana Chess Federation wishes congratulate the winners and to thank all participants who played diligently as well as FIDE arbiters John Lee and Anand Raghunauth whose tireless work made these tournaments successful.

The GCF also wishes to thank the Ministry of Culture, Youth and Sport, the National Sports Commission and the management of the National Stadium.

Special thanks to KFC Guyana and Gaico Construction for their sponsorships.


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