Chess titles underscore the glitz and glamour of superiority in the understanding of the chess game. Little wonder that parity was restored as the Malawi’s highest titled chess player, Fide Master Gerald Mphungu emerged victorious on the inaugural Sempha Investments Chess Tournament played over the weekend at Kamuzu Institute for Sports in Lilongwe.
Mphungu who travelled from Blantyre, wheeled away with a trophy, a gold medal and MK60.000 cash prize, after scooping six and a half points out of seven, to shine as a clear winner in a field of 30 players including 4 Candidate Masters.
New sensation Ernest Matola, and Candidate Master Petros Mfune grabbed the second and third prize of MK50.000 and MK30.000 respectively.
They were tied at five and a half points but were separated using the Bulcholz tie-breaking system. They also received a silver and bronze medals apiece, for their feat.
In his remarks, Mphungu said that the tournament was one of the toughest in recent times because it attracted all top rated players in the country.
The sponsor, Charles Sempha Zimba who graced the prize presentation ceremony on Sunday, dished out surprise cash prizes to tertiary students from Kamuzu College of Nursing (KCN) and Lilongwe University of Agriculture and Natural Resources (LUANAR) who embraced the challenge of brushing shoulders with the chess elite.
The five students were Willard Msendema, Chilungamo Sabuni, Alinafe Ntandika, Gavily Maluwa, and Martha Kapalamula.
The best student Willard Msendema from LUANAR pocketed MK15.000 plus a medal, whereas the best lady accolade of MK10.000 and a medal was eked out by Desiderata Nkhoma.
Nkhoma will later this month represent the country in an international tournament in Mansa, Zambia.
Sempha Investments Chess tournament is sponsored to the tune of MK1 million annually, which translates to MK250.000 quarterly.
According to the Central Region Chess League (CRCL) Chairman, Moses Mtumbuka, the next edition which is earmarked for January 2018, will also weave in secondary schools in order to expand the game to the grassroots in the region.Follow and Subscribe Nyasa TV :