Torre-Antonio chess rematch set in 2008
GRANDMASTERS Eugene Torre and Rogelio “Joey” Antonio Jr., fierce rivals in tournaments and not the best of friends in the politics of their sport, are ready to renew their rivalry next year.
Both camps agreed to stage a 12-match marathon in the summer of 2008 for two reasons: Promote chess in the countryside and prepare themselves for the biggest battleground of the sport–the Chess Olympiad.
“Hindi na rin naman kami bumabata. We need to develop more young chess talents,” said Torre. “We’re hoping to get the interest of potential talents from the grassroots level by going to their places.”
Still the country’s top two rated players despite their advanced age, Torre and Antonio are tipped to lead the country’s campaign in the biennial meet set in Dresden, Germany.
“Hindi natin alam baka last Olympiad na namin next year,” said Antonio. “Anuman ang mangyari maganda na ‘yung preparado kami.”
They’ve got the best sparring partner in each other. Quezon City majority floor leader and fourth district councilor Ariel Inton likes the idea of hosting a rematch between Torre and Antonio, a decade after the historic clash of the local chess titans.
Antonio became the first local player to beat Torre in a series with a 1-up victory in their 1998 match.
“Both players are based in Quezon City. It would be great for our city and our people if the Torre vs. Antonio II will be held here, besides sila ay (they are the) most outstanding Quezon City athletes,” said Inton.
“If it’s not possible for us to host all 12 matches, sana kahit ‘yung first three and last three.”
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