Malawi’s highest rated chess player Joseph Mwale, who is based in South Africa, continues to enjoy a rich vein of form there as he emerged winner of the 2017 Kwazulu Natal (KZN) Chess Open and the 2017 Blitz tournament.
According to Chessafrica.net website, the Malawian — who turns 24 this year, is nicknamed ‘The Fear’.
“Congratulations are in order to the man whose nickname is The Fear,” the website said. “His opponents in the Open and Blitz tournaments had good reason to fear the man whose play has become the stuff of nightmares for many a player over the checkered board.
“Mwale, who entered the tournament as second seed, rated behind International Master (IM) Johannes Mabusela outperformed his second seeding. Mwale had a [world chess governing body] FIDE rating of 2124, which is more than 120 points below Mabusela’s 2250.”
Africachess.net says Mwale can expect to gain a number of rating points after his impressive tournament.
The Blitz tournament is played after the main Open tournament.
The website said: “It is difficult enough to dominate one type of play in chess. It is extremely difficult to win both the classical and blitz versions of a tournament.”
The website quotes KZN Chess Federation President Erick Takawira as saying Mwale has become such a strong player because he works hard and doesn’t shy away from tough competition.
It is reported that Mwale’s exploits has attracted the attention of the media there because of his active participation in tournaments and is prepared to travel hundreds of kilometres to take part in premium chess competitions.
The report said Mwale finished with 6 points at the KZN, winning 6 games losing one game in the last round to Brighton Mthunzi, who travelled all the way from Johannesburg together with a number of other top chess players.
His runners-up were Brighton Mthunzi and Stephen Skosana tying on 5.5 points while the IM Johannes Mabusela finished with 5 points.
Last month, Mwale emerged at the summit of a fairly strong tournament that also featured a celebrated Zambian chess trainer, Musatwe Simutowe.
He won the Ukurhulepi Open after posting 5.5 points out of six. Another Malawian Richard Mbedza came 7th.