Friday, October 23, 2009


FCPL players earn podium finish in Dubai Active Chess Open

Participants, winners and officials of the
recent Dubai Active Chess Tournament.

The FCPL again sent its players to the top rankings in the recent Dubai Active Chess Tournament held last October 15 and 17 at the Dubai Chess and Culture Club.

Jobannie C. Tabada and Rolenson Loyola each scored seven points to join two others for a tie at the fourth to seventh places. Both FCPL players picked up the pace late in the tournament after early setbacks. Tabada suffered a loss by default in the first round along with fellow FCPL player Joey Tiberio as the two had to attend to urgent preparations for the FCPL's Sing for a Cause charity event. Tabada suffered another setback in the sixth round to second-seed IM Fouad El Taher before cruising to three straight wins.

Loyola got derailed in the second round after he forced and eventually lost an already drawn endgame against the UAE's Omar Abdulwahab. After another loss in the fifth round to fellow FCPL player Rocky Pabalan, Loyola raked in four successive wins, capped by a final-round victory over fourth-seed Mohamed Amer of Egypt.

The tournament was won by top-seed GM Salem AR Saleh, the UAE's current teenage chess sensation and No.1 player. IM Fouad El Taher, a long-time chess coach in the UAE, and surprise podium finisher Santhosh P of India, who is a regular participant in FCPL tournaments, were at joint second with 7.5 points each. Egypt's IM Ali Farhat and India's Candidate Master Haridas K had seven points each.

Salem received Dh 1,000, Fouad and Santhosh shared the combined second and third prizes and received Dh 600 each, while Farhat, Haridas, Tabada and Loyola split the Dh. 300 cash prize for fourth. The tournament offered cash prizes only to the top four players.

Other FCPL players who competed in the tournament were NM Robert Arellano, FM Antonio Molina Sr., Marvin Marcos, Willy Narag, Francis Erwin Dimarucut, Hermie Cagatin, Macky Ingcongan, Larry Dolor, Dennis Raymund Victoria, Carlos de Guzman, Angelito Melicano, Richard Perez, Armando Delgado, Gerry Lababo, Joey Tiberio, Kyle Cedrick Dolor and Marlon Manila.

Standings (up to six points)

(Click here for full standings)

Final-round pairing (up to board 25)

(Click here for complete final-round pairings)

Loyola receives his cash prize from tournament officials.

Tabada receives his cash prize.
Winners and tournament officials. Champion
GM Salem AR Saleh is second from right

It was interesting to note, though, that the champion had losing games against two FCPL players: Rocky Pabalan, who was looking to score a repeat after a rousing 28-move upset win over Salem during last April's Dubai Open, and new Dubai resident Francis Erwin Dimarucut, a former college standout out of Tarlac State University.

Pabalan - GM Salem
(White to move)

Rocky played 1.Ba6? in this position. Rolenson Loyola, who was observing this encounter, pointed out to both players in the post-mortem analysis the winning move: 1.Qxc6! After 1...Qxc6, which is forced or else black loses a piece, there comes 2.Bxd5 Qxd5 Rxd5 and black is a healthy pawn up with the e-5 pawn coming down as well shortly. Black's weak a7 and f5 pawns compound his problems.

Dimarucut - GM Salem
(White to move)

Erwin, who arrived in Dubai only last May to work for an insurance firm, would have probably won this position against any other opponent in the tournament. But playing the top-seeded grandmaster in the first round of his first tournament in the UAE may have added a little more pressure to this game. Dumarucut played 1.Rf7+, which was not bad and at first glance seems to be a sensible choice. But the direct 1.Rxh7! was actually the crusher as shown in the following sample variation: 1...Kg8 forced or else black gets mated 2.Rbg7! an important in-between move 2...Kf8 3.Rc7 with this rook now controlling the potentially dangerous passed pawn, the other rook can start wiping out the kingside pawns. 3...Kg8 4.Rhg7+ Kf8 5.Rgf7+ Ke8 6.Rxf6 c3 7.Rxg6 and white gets three kingside passed pawns while black's passer gets nowhere.

The actual game went 1. Rf7+ Ke8 2.Rxh7 Rd7 the only move 3.Rb8+ Rd8 4.Rh8 Ke7 5.Rb7+ 5.Rhxd8 looked plausible but black interjects with 5...f5+!, otherwise the immediate exchange of rooks will give the white king enough time to catch up with the black passed pawn on the c file. 6.Kg5 Rxd8 and the resulting rooks and pawns endgame now has less material but is a lot more complex than in the starting position 5...R3d7 Rh7, etc. Couldn't make out the rest of the moves but with the black king in a more active position, black's chances were now higher although the game may have still been a draw if not for fatal blunders committed by Dimarucut much later in the endgame.

Finally, Rocky's win over Salem during last April's Dubai Open.

[White "Salem, AR."]
[Black "Pabalan, R."]
[Event "11th Dubai Open"]
[Date "2009.04.26"]
[Round "1"]
[WhiteElo "2479"]
[BlackElo "1938"]

1. d4 d5 2. c4 c6 3. Nc3 Nf6 4. e3 e6 5. Nf3 Bd6 6. Bd3 Qe7 7. e4 dxc4 8. Bxc4 e5 9. dxe5 Bxe5 10. Nxe5 Qxe5 11. O-O O-O 12. h3 b5 13. Bd3 b4 14. Ne2 Ba6 15. Bf4 Qxb2 16. Rb1 Qa3 17. Rb3 Qxa2 18. Bc2 Nbd7 19. Nd4 Bxf1 20. e5 Rfe8 21. exf6 Nxf6 22. Qxf1 c5 23. Bb1 Qa4 24. Qb5 Qxb5 25. Nxb5 Nd5 26. Bg3 c4 27. Rb2 c3 28. Rb3 a5 0-1

Labels: , , , , ,


FCPL players make it to winner's circle in Sharjah chess

Three FCPL players joined the winner's circle in the recent Sharjah Ramadan Chess Open held at the Holiday International Hotel in Sharjah.

Fide Master Antonio Molina Sr., Jobannie C. Tabada and Tato Abdullah each scored seven points to secure a tie for fourth to 14th places. Tabada ended up at ninth, Molina at 13th and Abdullah at 14th after the tiebreaks. Each of them received US$ 200.

Molina drew his ninth-round game against Georgia's Parmen Gelazonia, while Abdullah had a two-pawn defecit in a knights and pawns endgame but was able to successfully hold on to a draw against Egyptian FM Georg Magdy.

Tabada spoiled a chance to claim the overall championship when he bungled a two-pawn advantage in his final-round game against top-seed and eventual champion GM Yuri Drozdovskij of Ukraine. The FCPL player capitalized on an early blunder by the Ukrainian on the 18th move, a pawn push to g4 that resulted in the following position:

GM Drozdovskij - Tabada
(Black to move)

There followed 18... Nxg4! 19.hxg4 Qxg4+ 20.Bg2 Qxd4 and black is simply two pawns up 21.Qe2 Bf8 22.Re1 Bf5 23.Rd1 Qg4 24.f3 Qh5 25.c5 and the following position was reached...

GM Drozdovskij - Tabada
(Black to move)

Black played 25... Bd7?! (25.... Rad8 or 25... Qg6 was more accurate here) 26.Ne4? (26.cd6! Nf5 27.Re8 Re8 28.Ne4 gives white a dangerous attack) 26... Qg6 27.cd6 cd6? (black is hallucinating. 27...Nf5 was correct and after 28.dxc7 Qb6 29.Nf6+ Qf6 30.Re8 Be8, black is a piece up and will soon neutralize the white passed pawns) 28.Nd6 Nf5?? (black simply self-destructs. This move loses a piece without anything in return) 29.Rxe8! (of course, not 29.Nxe8? on account of 29...Bc5+ and black regains the upper hand) 29...Rxe8 30.Nxe8 and it was just a matter of time before black resigned.

It was a major disappointment for Tabada who failed to follow up on his big wins over FM Djakhangir Agaragimov of Azerbaijan and Serbian WGM Maria Manakova in the seventh and eighth rounds, respectively. A win over the top-seed would have given Tabada clear first and a US$ 1,500 paycheck.

Instead, it was Drozdovskij who picked up the championship with eight points. At joint second and third with 7.5 points apiece were Azerbaijan's IM Sanan Dovliatov and his youthful compatriot FM Ulvi Bajarani. The two players drew their ninth-round game.

Marvin Marcos, NM Robert Arellano and Rocky Pabalan also had a chance for a podium finish, but were unsuccessful in their final-round games against GM Roman Ovetchkin of Russia, GM Elmar Magerramov and IM Akaki Shalamberidze of Azerbaijan, respectively.

Other FCPL players who trooped to Sharjah to compete in the tournament were Melvin Segismundo, Larry Dolor, Angelito Melicano, Jumar Abo, Axel John Valerio, Augusto 'Marz' Marcial, Macky Ingcongan, Richard Perez, Alexius Valerio, Lito Lababo, Ronnie G. Balilo, Carlos de Guzman, Hermie Cagatin, Gerry Lababo and Antonio Gawid.

Nearly 200 players from different countries participated in the nine-round Swiss system tournament. Time control was 20 minutes plus five-second increment per move.

Top 14 standings below (click on image to enlarge)

(Click here for complete final standings)

Final-round pairings (top 17 boards only)

(Click here for complete final-round pairings)

Videos taken at the tournament courtesy of Richard Perez.

Labels: , ,

Monday, October 19, 2009


Pabalan wins anew

Rocky Pabalan picked up another championship finish after winning the FCPL September Active Chess Tournament at Reef Mall.

Pabalan, who won the July tournament and finished runner-up in August, had a perfect 6-out-of-6 slate and was a full point ahead of the field entering the final round. A short draw with Axel John Valerio in the seventh round sealed the title.

Paul Dargan of the UK settled for second place with six points, half a point behind the champion. Jumar Abo was third with five points, while Valerio was fourth also with five points. Valerio's father, Alexious, took the fifth spot with 4.5 points.

(photos to be published later)

Final round pairings

Labels: , , ,

Sunday, October 18, 2009


Abdullah scores rare sweep in FCPL August Active Chess Tournament

Tato Abdullah (centre) receives his prize from FCPL Sec-Gen Ronnie Balilo.
Joining them are (from left) FCPL President and tournament arbiter
Jobannie C. Tabada, FCPL Adviser Joey Tiberio and Abu
Dhabi Ramadan
Active Chess champion Rolenson Loyola,
who was one of the tournament sponsors.

Tato Abdullah swept the competition to rule the FCPL August Active Chess Tournament at Reef Mall. The third-seeded Abdullah scored six points in six games to finish 1.5 points ahead of his nearest pursuers.

Top-seed Rocky Pabalan settled for second, edging out fellow 4.5-pointer Melvin Segismundo, the tournament's No.2 seed, in the tiebreak score. Richard Perez and Jumar Abo took the fourth and fifth spots. All top five players received cash prizes.

The special prizes were awarded to Art Lilagan (top Under 1700/unrated), Ben Penranda (top Under 1800), Angelito Melicano (top Under 1900) and Kyle Cedric Dolor (top Kiddie).

The tournament was sponsored by Rolenson Loyola, Robert Arellano and Marvin Marcos. Loyola and Arellano finished first and second, respectively, during the Abu Dhabi Ramadan Active Chess Open, while Marcos was seventh in the same tournament.

Standings (click on image to enlarge)

Final-round pairings (click on image to enlarge)

Second placer Rocky Pabalan.

Third placer Melvin Segismundo.

Fourth placer Richard Perez

Top Under 1700/Unrated Art Lilagan.

Top Under 1800 Ben Penaranda.

Top Under 1900 Angelito Melicano.

Top Kiddie Kyle Cedric Dolor.

ABSENT MINDED. FCPL Board Member Gerry Lababo (right)
about to punch the wrong clock in his game against Kyle Dolor.

Align CenterFIRST TIMERS. FCPL adviser Paul Ducalang (right) vs. first-timer
Arnold Cabiasa, Nino Gawid (second from left) vs. another first-timer
Marcelino Gonzales, and Eddie Dural (third from left) vs. yet another
first-time FCPL tournament player, Lito Lababo, brother of Gerry.

Kiddie player Jean Aeolus Gueco (left) vs. Melvin Segismundo.

Rocky Pabalan (left) vs. Richard Perez.



Loyola rules Abu Dhabi Ramadan Active Chess Open

Loyola (right) with Ladies champion GM Maia Chiburdanidze
and Masters division champion GM Hrair Simonian.

FCPL's Rolenson Loyola shared the limelight with Georgian legend GM Maia Chiburdanidze during the Ramadan Active Chess Festival in Abu Dhabi last August. Loyola led a one-two finish by the Filipinos in the Open division after he scored eight points in nine rounds to emerge champion.

Chiburdanidze, who ruled as World Woman Champion from 1978-1991, took the championship in the Ladies division, while Armenian GM Hrair Simonian ruled the Masters division.

National Master Robert Arellano was second after prevailing by half a point in the tiebreak score over the UAE's FM Khouri Ahmed Abbas, who wound up third. Arellano and Abbas finished with 7.5 points apiece.

Another Filipino, Armando Nachor of the Abu Dhabi-based Filipino chess group ADFORCE, finished joint fourth with three others each toting seven points. FCPL's Marvin Marcos settled for solo seventh place with 6.5 points.

The championship win was worth 8,000 Dirhams (around P104,000) for Loyola, Arellano received 5,000 Dirhams (around P65,000), Nachor 2,500 Dirhams (around P32,500) and Marcos 1,500 Dirhams (around P19,500).

It was also a well-deserved payoff for Loyola, Arellano and Marcos, who are all based in Dubai, as they had to travel nearly four hours every day from Dubai to Abu Dhabi and back during the four-day tournament. Games were held at night starting at 10 in observace of the Ramadan. The three hitched a ride with another FCPL player, Carlos de Guzman, who also competed in the event.

Open division standings (click on image to enlarge)

(Click here for complete standings)

(Click here for Masters standings)

(Click here for Ladies standings)


Thursday, October 15, 2009


Invitation to join the "FCPL Sing for a Cause"

'Sing for a Cause' will be held on October 16 (Friday) at the main entrance lobby of Reef Mall.

The event is for the benefit of the victims of the series of powerful typhoons that have hit the Philippines, particularly typhoon Ondoy.

This event will also serve as tribute to all the volunteers and benefactors of the ongoing donation drive being held at Reef Mall. Through an afternoon of singing, fun and camaraderie, join us in saying “thank you” to all the nameless individuals who have selflessly offered their time, talent and resources for this donation campaign.

The donation campaign has been going on for more than two weeks and will culminate on Oct. 16.

Sing for a Cause is essentially a videoke event wherein all mall visitors and guests from different FilCom organisations are encouraged to sing for a donation of at least Dh 10 for each song.

You can request as many songs as you want and you may also have other people sing the songs you requested.

All donations will be given to charitable institutions helping the typhoon Ondoy victims

The event will also feature a singing contest.

Please come and be part of a noble undertaking. Your help can go a long way in rebuilding the lives of the countless many who have been rendered homeless and devastated by the recent calamities.


Monday, October 05, 2009


Invitation to join the "FCPL Chess Festival for a Cause"

(Please click on image below)


This page is powered by Blogger. Isn't yours?