Four top rated players from the Southern Region failed to qualify for the national finals of Presidential Initiative championship.
This follows tricky qualifying tournament held at Malawi College of Medicine over the weekend.
The four are former national champion James Kamowa, candidate master Joseph Chalemba, Rombani Mkamanga and Zengani MKandawire.
Chess Association of Malawi (Chessam) publicity secretary Gilton Mkumbwa said the qualifiers were difficult.
“All the players had prepared to qualify for the national finals. The four met tough opposition which is good for the sport,” he said.
Francis Banda emerged champion after collecting 5.5 points out of six rounds of Swiss pairing.
Sam Nkhwazi finished second while veteran Kajani Kaunda was on third. The two collected 4.5 points and they were separated by Buccholz tie break.
Zomba based players Richard Chiona and Chiletso Chipanga finished fourth and fifth respectively to qualify for national finals.
In Central Region, Misheck Nyirenda won the regional title ahead of Alfred Chinthere and Ackim Mwale who were on positions two and three respectively.
The three amassed five points and they were separated by tie break.
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