Russian chess Grandmaster Papin Vasily, who arrived in country on August 6 to train the Malawi team that shall represent the country at the Chess Olympiad to be held in the Eastern European city of Batumi in Georgia from September 23 to October 6, will play simultaneous exhibition games against top 30 Malawians on Saturday, August 18 at Country Club Limbe in Blantyre from 1 pm.
Chess Association of Malawi (Chessam) publicity secretary Makhosi Nyirenda says the players will include the Batumi Olympiad bound team he is drilling, two juniors and other top 18 rated players.
“The exhibition is intended to market chess and inspire and expose Malawi chess players. Malawi chess players have had 2 exhibitions in their ever glowing history,” Makhosi said.
“In 2006, British Grandmaster Nigel Short almost wiped out all his 44 opponents but Kajani Kaunda saved Malawi’s face when he forced a draw as the Briton won 43.5 of the 44 games.
“In 2015 Chinese Grandmaster Chen Zhu (a lady) beat Malawi 17.5 of the 20 games. Malawi’s top players Candidate Masters Alfred Chimthere and Chiletso Chipanga pulled brilliant wins and while Kamuzu College of Nursing student Godwell Manda forced a draw,” he said.
Garry Kasparov once wiped out 6 of Israel’s strong national team grandmasters in a simultaneous exhibition.
Vasily is in the country courtesy of world chess governing body FIDE president Kirsan Ilyumzhinov who pledged that he shall sponsor an international Grandmaster of repute to come and train Malawi’s Olympiad team.
The pledge was made after a private meeting with Chessam president Kezzie Msukwa during a FIDE Congress held in Zimbabwe in August last year.
According to Wikipedia, Papin was awarded the Grandmaster title in February 2011 for his results in the 7th N.K. Aratovsky Memorial 2007 Open in Saratov, and the 2009 and 2010 M. Chigorin Memorial tournaments in Saint Petersburg.
During 2011, Papin jointly won the 6th Dvorkovich Memorial Open in Taganrogand, finished equal second in The 26th Summer Universiade in Shenzhen and won the 2012 Moscow Open F Tournament for students.
Papin also won the 2013 New Caledonia International Open in Nouméa and finished equal first in the 2013 Australasian Masters GM tournament in Melbourne.
He also finished equal first in the 2014 “Taça Cuca SA” International Open in Luanda. His highest ever FIDE rating was 2583 in September 2011.
The Batumi team comprises CM Chiletso Chipanga, CM Joseph Mwale, Fide Master (FM) Gerald Mphungu, George Mwale, Richard Chiona for the Open Section while the ladies are WFM Linda Jambo, Daisy Nkhoma, Tupokiwe Msukwa, Ellen Mpinganjira and Anne Simwawa.
Their captains are Joseph Chalemba for Open Section and Magret Ngugama for the ladies and the head of delegation is Gershom Chima with Mark Chikoko as assembly delegate.
The last Olympiad in 2016 that took place in Baku, Azerbaijan and Malawi was ably represented there as well through FM Gerald Mphungu, CM Petros Mfune, CM Chiletso Chipanga, Alfred Chimthere and Paul Khuphwathea in Open Section while the ladies were Linda Jambo, Ellen Mpinganjira, Vitumbiko Gondwe, Daisy Nkhoma and Tupokiwe Msukwa.
Chiletso goes to Batumi with some confidence after becoming African Amateurs champion in Zambia as well coming 6th at the World Amateurs held in Italy.Follow and Subscribe Nyasa TV :