Saturday, November 07, 2009
Loyola survives upset scare to rule Al Ain Mineral Water Active Chess
Meanwhile, the tournament welcomed a special visitor from Washington DC, whose presence certainly perked up and stirred the creativity in some on account of the surprise strong performance of a few unheraleded players. More about this prodigious beauty, whose photo you can see below, and her equally jaw-dropping credentials at the latter part of this report.
by this Fil-Am visitor from Washington DC.
After carting away Dh 8,000 when he recently ruled the Open division of the 2009 Abu Dhabi International Ramadan Chess Festival, Loyola again hit pay dirt when he topped the Dubai active chess event with six points in seven games, overtaking erstwhile solo leader Rocky Pabalan, who dropped to second place after blowing his title bid with a crushing loss to eventual third-placer Melvin Segismundo.
A final-round win over Erwin Dimarucut sealed Loyola’s title hunt, prevailing in an exciting Queen’s Pawn encounter wherein he converted a slight positional advantage into a decisive queenside offensive. Unable to make solid progress with his kingside forays in the middlegame, Loyola shifted his attack to Dimarucut’s queenside where his powerful battery of major pieces struck deep into enemy territory, ultimately deciding the game’s outcome.
The second-seeded Loyola received a major upset scare when fatal blunders resulted in a completely losing position against ninth-seed Larry Dolor in the fifth round. However, in the thick of a mad time scramble, Dolor failed to anticipate a creative and instructie defensive manoeuvre by Loyola that allowed the eventual champion to force a draw by giving up his last remaining piece – a rook – to achieve a stalemate position.
Dolor - Loyola
(White to move)
Dolor - Loyola
(Black to move)
Meanwhile, Pabalan, who needed only a draw against Segismundo to formalise his claim of the title, found himself on the wrong end of another potent queenside attack, which forced him to give up material and eventually concede the point in a hopeless endgame position. Pabalan had nonetheless built enough cushion over his nearest pursuers to still grab second place with 5.5 points.
Segismundo finished with five points in a tie with Jumar Abo, who was relegated to fourth with an inferior tiebreak score. The rest of the top 10 scorers were Larry Dolor, new FCPL tournament player Napoleon Recososa, Macky Ingcongan, Francis Erwin Dimarucut, Ben Penaranda and Carlos de Guzman.
Indian kiddie campaigner Anusweud received a special prize as the top Under-14 age-group player. Special prizes were also awarded to top scorers in different rating categories: Danny Ambing (1900-below), Richard Perez (1800-below) and new FCPL recruit Raymond Dolor (1700-below/Unrated). All winners received cash prizes and gift items from Al Ain Mineral Water.
The sponsorship from Al Ain Mineral Water was made possible through the efforts of FCPL Adviser Emman Marbella.
Final Standings (click on image to enlarge)
Final round pairings (click on image to enlarge)
Champion Rolenson Loyola with tournament arbiter
FA Jobannie C. Tabada (left) and FCPL Sec-Gen Ronnie G. Balilo
He played in last month's Dubai Chess Club active chess
tournament where he had the UAE's top player
GM Salem AR Saleh on the ropes. The Al Ain Mineral Water event
was his first appearance in an FCPL-organised tournament.
off a strong finish after a slow start.
for finishing 12th. Marcos, who was champion in the Chess
For A Cause Active Chess Tournament last October,
was a major disappointment, losing back-to-back games
in the third and fourth rounds and then compounded his woes
with a final-round loss to new player Napoleon Recososa.
Ronnie G. Balilo and Willy Laceste preparing the
medals, cash prizes and gift items from Al Ain Mineral Water.
Although we're still not yet sure if drop-dead beauty is indeed a compulsory requirement for one to become a policy analyst -- especially for one who's based in Washington DC, the policy capital of the world -- we're now pretty certain that a degree from UP, an MS in Foreign Service from Georgetown University -- with honours, of course -- and, for good measure, throwing in a bit of work experience from the World Bank and the United Nations will probably give you a good head start.
Dovelyn is in Dubai to do research work on the recruitment process for OFWs. She dropped by at the tournament with the hope of interviewing a few people who were recruited through an agency. Unfortunately, most of the guys at the tournament got into Dubai through visit visas before eventually landing jobs. However, she did get two or three interviews of people who went through the government-sponsored process. Although Dovelyn couldn't stay long (she had to leave for another group interview with a group of Filipina domestic helpers at Chow King in Satwa) her presence must have energised some players, considering there were a few who performed above their nominal ratings (of course, the tournament top-seed Marvin Marcos would be the perfect antithesis, but that's a completely different story).
Dovelyn will use her findings to file a report and make recommendations to improve Philippine policies that concern OFWs, which she says will then be turned over to the concerned authorities in the Philippines. The FCPL wishes Dovelyn good luck with her mission and we hope that our fears of government inaction on her well-meaning proposals are simply hallucinations of us jaded expats and that her work will indeed make a difference on the lives of Filipino overseas workers.
While Dovelyn does not play chess -- that's according to her, although she somehow seems interested to learn -- there are some things that connect her with chess fanatics (aside from being an "analyst" herself like chess players seem to be, albeit in a more irrational way): She's apparently well versed with the Nordic language, which is a good thing because we now have someone to translate interviews of Norwegian boy wonder Margnus Carlsen that are conducted in Nordic dialect. As her profile suggests, Dovelyn is especially adept with Icelandic, which is again a great thing as she could be the key to helping us figure out the mysteries of the chess world's beloved Bobby Fischer's final days in Iceland.
If you're wondering how come we know quite a lot about her, it's all here, actually. And while we're at it, here's a sampling of her work, which is a report about Filipino migrant workers.