Sunday, March 11, 2007


Philippine Airlines Sponsors Chess Tournament in Reef Mall

Over 60 of the best expatriate chess players in the United Arab Emirates ("UAE") and several UAE local enthusiasts vyed for the coveted title in the Philippine Airlines sponsored Chess Tournament held in Reef Mall, Dubai.

Under the 9 round Swiss System regulations, the tournament commenced on Thursday, 1 March 2007 until Friday, 9 March 2007 and was organised by the Filipino Chess Players League ("FCPL") with support from the UAE Chess Federation and Dubai Chess Club.

The UAE Chess Federation Executive Director, Dr. Hesham Elgendy, who was the keynote speaker at the opening ceremony, expressed his gratitude to the sponsor and organiser for initiating this event and helping promote the game in the UAE. In his address, Dr. Elgendy said "On behalf of the UAE Chess Federation, I extend my appreciation to the Filipino Chess Players League for organising this tournament, which is an excellent venue to foster camaraderie among the different nationalities in the UAE".

Dr. Elgendy has commended Philippine Airlines for sponsoring this competition and he hoped that other companies would follow its example to further boost awareness and interest in the game. Dr Elgendy added that the UAE Chess Federation would always extend support by any possible means to achieve noble activities such as this tournament.

The opening ceremony was also attended by Philippine Consul General Honorable Antonio Curameng, Reef Mall Management's representative Engineer Rolly Arlante, DNATA Senior Sales Executive Joey Tiberio and FCPL President Marz S. Marcial. "A competition like this is a very good activity outside of work. Chess helps improve analytical ability and encourages players to be resourceful and creative in finding solutions to practical challenges. I congratulate all of you for being part of this event…" said Honorable Antonio Curameng, who made the ceremonial opening moves with Dr. Hesham Elgendy.

Mr. Joey Tiberio added that Philippine Airlines was pleased to be part of the UAE's chess community through the company's sponsorship of this event. Philippine Airlines' support to chess is part of the company's social responsibility initiatives, which are aimed at benefiting the community.

Leading the opening-round was top-seed Fide Master Antonio Molina I of the Philippines, who handed Emman Marbella a clinical thrashing in their first-round encounter. Other noted players who laboured through their opening assignments were second-seed Danny Baltazar, third-seed Arnel Matildo and dark horse Singaravelan Narayan of India.

The tournament is part of a series of activities lined up by the FCPL this month in preparation for the Dubai Chess Open Championship, one of the most prestigious annual international tournaments in the UAE to be held during the month of April at the Dubai Chess and Culture Club.

"We are very thankful to Philippine Airlines for their help and we look forward to a further collaborative efforts with them," said FCPL President Marz S. Marcial. He further said that this will be a busy month for chess players as, immediately after this tournament, the FCPL will organize another event at the Dubai Festival City ("DFC"), which will feature more exciting activities. The DFC event will have separate competitions for senior and junior players, themed competitions featuring teams made up of family members, a puzzle-solving contest and simultaneous chess exhibitions.

For more information, please contact:

Jobannie C. Tabada
Media Liaison Officer
Tel: +971 50 4674887

Marz S. Marcial
FCPL President
Tel: +971 50 8618734

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