So still RP’s top chess player; Antonio, Laylo now 2-3
09/01/2009 06:30 PM

The Philippines’ three World Chess Cup-bound players – GMs Wesley So, Rogelio Antonio, Jr. and Darwin Laylo – emerged as the top three Filipino players in the newest ratings list released by the World Chess Federation (FIDE).

So remains as the country’s highest-rated player with an ELO of 2644 – two points down from his previous high of ELO 2646 – based on the Sept. 1 list released by the world’s governing body.

But the two-point deduction during the two-month period from July to August pulled down the 15-year-old Filipino chess champion to eighth place overall in the list of the world’s top junior players.

So was ranked seventh in the previous list.

Still ahead of So are GMs Magnus Carlsen (ELO 2772) of Norway, Sergey Karjakin (ELO 2722) of Ukraine, Maxime Vachier-Lagrave (ELO 2718) of France, Wang Hao (ELO 2690) of China, Fabiano Caruana (ELO 2662) of Italy, Dmitry Andreikin (ELO 2659) of Russia and Sergei Zhigalko (ELO 2646) of Belarus.

Overall, the high school student of St. Francis (Bacoor) is ranked 97th in the world in a tie with GMs Alexander Fier of Brazil and Julio Granda Zuniga of Peru. His previous rank was 92nd.

So, however, is still ranked No. 9 overall in Asia and No. 1 in the world in the under-16 category.

Antonio, who booked his second appearance in the World Chess Cup scheduled in Khanty-Mansiysk, Russia later this year, moved up to second place among Filipinos with an ELO of 2557.

A mainstay of Philippine Army, the 47-year-old Antonio finished in a tie for third place in the Asian Individual chess championship held in Subic with 7.5 points on five wins, five draws and only one loss.

Big leap for Laylo

Laylo, who topped the recent Asian Zone 3.3 chess championship in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam with a near-flawless 8/9 score, made the biggest jump – from seventh with ELO 2494 to third with ELO 2537, or an increase of 42.9 points.

The pride of Lipa City, Batangas also scored 6/8 during the Victory Mall-National Open championship.

Asia’s first GM, Eugene Torre, dropped from second to fourth place with an ELO of 2535 from a high of 2550 the previous rating period.

Dresden Olympiad sensation GM John Paul Gomez retained fifth place with ELO of 2521, while former Asian junior champion and US -based GM-elect Rogelio Barcenilla Jr. dropped to sixth with an ELO of 2518.

Barcenilla boosted his stock when he garnered an additional 15 points on the strength of his triumph in the Copper State international tournament in Arizona.

Barcenilla, who earned his third and final GM norm, is only waiting for the next FIDE Congress to officially earn his title.

Completing the Top 10 Filipino players are GM Mark Paragua at seventh (2501); IM Richard Bitoon, eighth (249); IM Julio Catalino Sadorra, ninth (2468); and Italy-based GM Joseph Sanchez, 10th (2463). – GMANews.TV

# Name Title Fed Rating G
1 So, Wesley g PHI 2644 9
2 Antonio, Rogelio Jr g PHI 2557 8
3 Laylo, Darwin g PHI 2537 17
4 Torre, Eugenio g PHI 2535 9
5 Gomez, John Paul g PHI 2521 8
6 Barcenilla, Rogelio m PHI 2518 0
7 Paragua, Mark g PHI 2501 17
8 Bitoon, Richard m PHI 2490 17
9 Sadorra, Julio Catalino m PHI 2468 0
10 Sanchez, Joseph g PHI 2463 17
11 Salvador, Roland m PHI 2461 29
12 Gonzales, Jayson g PHI 2457 8
13 Barbosa, Oliver m PHI 2451 19
14 Dimakiling, Oliver m PHI 2434 0
15 Villamayor, Buenaventura g PHI 2426 0
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