3rd CHESS PONG TOURNAMENT: MORE PEOPLE, MORE LEVEL
By Daniel Luco
On Saturday 23th May the 3rd chess pong tournament was held in Sant Cugat del Vallès, a small town 20 km from Barcelona, in Catalonia.
Chess pong is a combination of table tennis and chess. The first edition was quite similar to chessboxing, changing the ring for a table tennis court and combining 10 points in table tennis with 10 moves in chess. To break the advantage of starting in one sport, the first time was only 5 moves or points, and then series of 10. The winner was the first to win 2 sets at 11 in table tennis or a semi-rapid game of 10 minutes in chess.
The second edition was a little bit different. The chances for the chess players were increased. In the old system when playing against a good table tennis player they were obliged to deliver mate in less than 25 moves and could be also only 20. That time it was in table tennis the first winning 3 sets, it means minimum 33 moves in chess, and in chess the game was 5 min + 3 seconds increment.
In this 3rd edition the format was totally different. It was a swiss-system with 9 rounds and in every round one player had to play against the other one game of chess, with 5 min + 3” increment and also one game of table tennis, the first winning 3 sets but with the exception of a draw result at 2-2 sets. The participation has increased to the 25 players, so it was possible with the new facilities to play all the rounds at the same time with 6 tables for the ping-pong and 6 boards for the chess.
The favourites were the same as in the other tournaments plus new incorporations. It means Enric Bosch and Dani Luco from the table tennis world and Josué Expósito, 2299 elo fide and Albert Ezquerro, 2096 elo fide and winner in the other 2 editions. The new incorporations were Josep Antón Velázquez in table tennis, bi-world champion in the trick-shot speciality and in chess Miquel Sierra, 2070 and Javier Morais, 1958.
After 9 rounds the classification was as follows, with a new winner, Enric Bosch, from the Sant Cugat Table Tennis, a good table tennis player with a strong amateur level in chess, with only losing once in table tennis and twice in chess. The silver was for Dani Luco, from the Club Ping-Pong Igualada, also coming from the table tennis world, who was been beaten in both sports by Bosch in very equal games only decided at the end. The bronze was for Javier Morais, from Escacs Mollet, a new participant in the tournament, quite strong in chess and with good form in table tennis.
Well, now it’s time to think about the next edition and new format for the 4th chess-pong tournament. The goal as usual is to equalize and challenge the abilities of every player in both sports.