Phiri is Zambia Closed chess champion
By Staff Reporter
Fri 25 Apr. 2014, 14:00
FIDE Master Richmond Phiri of Nkwazi Chess Club emerged champion of the 2014 Zambia Closed Chess Championship in Kitwe over Easter while Lorita Mwango (FM) scooped the championship in the women’s category.
According to the results confirmed by tournament director Chanda Nsakanya, Phiri who was the sixth ranked player at the beginning of the tournament, scored nine points after 11 rounds.
In second place was Phiri’s teammate, Godwin Phiri, who also had nine points but a weak tie break.
FM Douglas Munenga, Thomas Zulu, International Master Chitumbo Mwali and candidate master, Kelvin Chumfwa all ended level on eight points.
In the women’s category, Mwango of Red Arrows was crowned 2014 champion when she finished with 8.5 points ahead of five other players.
Constance Mbatha, also of Red Arrows and known for her colourful braids in Zambian national colours, finished in second position with seven points ahead of Linda Hamoonga of Nkwazi Chess Club who also finished with seven points.
Phylis Namasiku Mwilola of UNZA Chess Club was fourth with 4.5 points while Green Eagles’ Alva Sorenson managed three points to finish fifth. Kabamba Bwalya finished last.
With only six female chess players entering the tournament, the ladies played a double round-robin.
Stanley Chumfwa is the third highest ranked Zambian chess player after Amon Simutowe and IM Daniel Jere and he participated with a few others who comprise the national team which will participate in the Olympiads in Norway in August.
The tournament was missing a lot of the chess big guns, with Jere of Nkwazi and Epah Tembo away in Angola for the tournament. CM Andrew Kayonde of Green Eagles who is the current 2014 Zambian national champion was also away in Zimbabwe playing in that country’s Easter Open Championship, while IM Gillian Bwalya of Nkwazi was absent as he was still undergoing training at Police College.