Many surprises in round 2 of PGMA cup

John Paul Gomez defeats Wesley So

By Ed Andaya

THREE-time national junior champion IM John Paul Gomez authored the worthiest of eight upset wins when he brought down compatriot GM Wesley So to gain a share of the lead with eight others after two rounds in the third President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo Cup international chess championship at the Duty Free Fiesta Mall in Paranque City.

Gomez, who earned a place to the six-man Philippine team to the World Chess Olympiad in Dresden, Germany by topping the national qualifying tournament held in Mandaluyong City last July, outduelled his more-popular compatriot after only 31 moves of the French advance variation.

Aside from earning a place in the leaderboard with his second straight win, the win enabled the 22-year-old Gomez to avenge a heart-breaking loss to So in the penultimate stage of the 17-round Olympiad qualifier.

Gomez, the pride of Binan, Laguna, also hurdled his first-round assignment against Christopher Castellano.

Equally impressive was IM Barlo Nadera, who shocked No. 16 seed GM Saidali Iuldachev of Uzbekistan to join the eight-man lead pack in this prestigious, nine-round tournament organized by the National Chess Federation of the Philippines (NCFP) and supported by Duty Free Philippines, Department of Tourism, Pilipinas Shell, Globe and PAGCOR.

Also with perfect scores of two points are top seed GM Murtas Kazhgaleyev of Kazakhstan, defending champion Li Chao of China, last year’s co-winner Zhao Weiqi of China, No. 17 GM Li Shilong of China and local bets GMs Eugene Torre, Mark Paragua and Darwin Laylo and Gomez.

Kazhgaleyev, the highest-rated player here with an ELO of 2641, outwitted No. 20 GM Dao Thien Hai of Vietnam, while Li, who bagged the title last year, subdued newly-crowned ASEAN Grand Prix champion IM Julio Catalino Sadorra.

Zhou, who finished in a three-way tie for first place last year, humbled No. 25 GM Buenaventura “Bong” Villamayor.

Torre humbled No. 29 Zhang Ziyang of China, Paragua bested David Elorta and Laylo overwhelmed upset-conscious Karl Victor Ochoa to join the leaders.

Aside from Gomez and Nadera, the other second-round upset winners were No. 39 Wang Li of China, who toppled No. 9 GM Marat Dzhumaev of Uzbekistan; No. 45 Kaiqi Yang of China, who shocked No. 15 IM Rolando Nolte of the Philippines; No. 71 NM Noel de la Cruz, who surprised No. 27 IM Oliver Barbosa; No. 54 NM Efren Bagamasbad, who stunned No. 22 IM Oliver Dimakiling; No. 54 Haoxiang Jia of China, who downed No. 31 Dino Ballecer; and World Under-16 Olympiad campaigner Jan Emmanuel Garcia, who subdued No. 47 IM Chito Garma.

Second seed GM Zhang Zhong of Singapore, third seed GM Mikheil Mchedlishvili of Georgia and fourth seed Gm Ehsan Ghaemaghami of Iran led a big group of players with 1.5 points.

Zhong settled for a draw with GM Nguyen Anh Dung of Vietnam, Mchedishvili outplayed Haridas Pascua and Maghami demolished Hamed Nouri.

Also hurdling their second-round matches were No. 10 GM Susanto Megaranto of Indonesia, who subdued NM Emmanuel Senador; IM Richard Bitoon, who dumped Alfredo Paez; IM Aleksander Wohl of Australia, who stopped WIM Irene Sukandar of Indonesia; IM Ronald Bancod, who downed NM Mirabeau Maga; and Leonardo Carlos, who crushed Rolando Andador.

At stake in the annual tournament being organized in honor of President Arroyo for the third straight year is a total cash prize of US$40,000, with the champion getting the lion’s share of uS$6,000.

The runner-up and the third placer will receive US$5,000 and US$4,000, respectively.

Cash prizes will also be given to the fourth up to the 32 and places.

After the PGMA Cup, the NCFP will host the fourth edition of the Pichay Cup, which offers a total cash prize of US$30,000.


2 points – E. Torre (Philippines), M. Paragua (Philippines), D. Laylo (Philippines), J. Gomez (Philippines), B. Nadera (Philippines), M. Kazhgaleyev (Kazakhstan), C. Li (China), W. Zhou (China), S. Li (China)

1.5 – Z. Zhong (Singapore), M. Mchedlishvili (Georgia), E. Ghaemmaghami (Iran), N.N. Truong Son (Vietnam), S. Megaranto (Indonesia), K. Shananava (Uzbekistan), N.A. Dung (Vietnam), J. Gonzales (Philippines), D. Xiu (China), K. Yang (China), Y. Wan (China), L. Wang (China), R. Dableo (Philippines), I. Bitoon (Philippines), N. de la Cruz (Philippines), D. Causo (Philippines)

Chess, chess news and tournaments by Chessdom © 2007 - 2018