Chess attracts young players
BY JOSEPH MCHEKADONA
24th March 2014
Efforts to develop chess in the country are paying off as stakeholders are impressed by the rate at which the sport is gaining ground.
The observations were shared both by officials of the Tanzania Chess Association (TCA) and Tanzania Chess Federation.
Officials from the two associations noted that the turnout of junior players during chess games and the level of competition show that the sport is getting established at a faster rate than anticipated.
TCA chairman Geoffrey Mwanyika said many young people are now taking part in the sport, the development which he said will make the game grow in the country.
He attributed the interest by young players in chess to motivation set by Tanzania Chess Foundation with support from Spice Net Tanzania in training young players to become future grandmasters.
“The development offer by Spice Net Tanzania to pay for the school fees and training of young talented, dedicated and focus chess players to become Grand Masters is a key to motivating young them, many youngsters are now coming for games while others are practicing as individuals or groups”, he said.
On his remarks chairman of Tanzania Chess Federation Vinay Choudury said he is pleased with the turnout of young players at monthly chess tournament played at Dar Es Salaam Gymkhana Club (DGC).
He singled out two junior players from Shaaban Robert Secondary School Zanzuwadia Tejas and Bhalia Meet as very promising youngsters.
“We know it takes long to develop players, but we are impressed with the performance shown by the duo; Tajas and Meet , they are very good and promising, we hope one day they will carry the nation’s flag very high”, he said.
He also said efforts to increase the number of players and tournaments in the country catalyses competition hence development and growth.
“The sport is growing and the association is really helping. The established the federation is also bringing more young and mature players and this means more competition,” he said.
Meanwhile, Choundury said the forthcoming Tanzania game against Kenya in May will help domestic players to earn FIDE ranking as currently no local player has it.
“The coming international chess game in May is a positive development as the country aspires to become a force to reckon with on the international scene, we must prepare well to beat them so that we get our players on FIDE rankings.
“Players competing in the international event in May will improve their rating on FIDE ranking. We urge our players to utilise this chance by performing well to boost the rating on the rankings,” he said.
The country will feature nine players in the tourney of which four will be juniors while the remaining five will be seniors.