An 8-year-old boy from Miami Gardens won third place in a recent statewide chess tournament while his school won first place for the first time.
On Monday, Tuesday and Thursday afternoons, 8-year-old Davar Francois practices chess for a few hours at the Scott Lake Elementary Media Center, where the school’s chess club meets.
Among other kids, he ”stands out,” said his chess coach of three years, Cheryl Polite.
”He is a very intense, fascinated little one, and for some reason, he likes to explain to his opponents why they are losing,” Polite said.
“I can’t get him out of there.”
Davar, who won third place in the Florida Super State IV Chess Tournament on Feb. 7, does not enjoy when others lose. Instead, he likes to make them feel better by sharing his winning moves, Polite said. “He is very compassionate and has a big heart.”
It was winning fourth place in a north regional chess competition in late January that qualified him for the state tournament, when he competed against a group of second- and third-graders.
Davar began to play chess at age 5, following in the footsteps of his 13-year-old brother, Davos Francois Jr. It was at that age when Davar became part of the school’s chess club.
In 2006, while attending kindergarten, his class won fourth place in the National Chess Championship in Houston. In May 2008, he was the champion in a Miami-Dade County Public School Title I District Tournament.
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