Bacolod chess master Elorta dominates Jalosjos chessfest

By Alex P. Vidal

“Chess helps you to concentrate, improve your logic. It teaches you to play by the rules and take responsibility for your actions, how to problem solve in an uncertain environment.”— Garry Kasparov

SPORTS scribe and United States chess master Marlon Bernardino Jr. informed us June 30 that Bacolod chesser, FIDE Master David Elorta Jr., has swept his assignments and scored 9.0 points to rule the just-concluded Mayor Frederick Seth “Bullet” Jalosjos FIDE Rated Open Rapid Chess Tournament at the Dapitan Sports and Cultural Complex, Dapitan City, Zamboanga del Norte on June 29.

Bernardino, who also took part in the tournament, reported that Elorta Jr. opened his campaign with a win over Lora Megan Garcia then followed it with victories over Elvis Longjas, NM-elect Michael Jan Stephen Inigo, AFM Jaymiel Piel, Michael Linde, Cedric Kahlel Abris, FM Ellan Asuela, AGM Julius Dan Augustine Ablin and Phil Martin Casiguran.

His run was a testament of his mastery in the London System Opening and also the Caro-Kann Defense, Bernardino narrated.

Elorta pocketed the P30,000 cash prize during the awarding ceremony awarded by National Chess Federation of the Philippines (NCFP) Grassroots & Development Committee head and former Bayan Muna party-list Rep. Neri Javier Colmenares, NCFP Chief Executive Officer – GM/ FST Jayson Gonzales and the Executive Assistant of LGU, Mr. Jose Darry C. Patilano.

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“Mayor Frederick Seth “Bullet” Jalosjos FIDE Rated Open Rapid Chess Tournament, I wish that my luck would remain the same in my next tournament,” Bernardino quoted Elorta as saying.

The Bacolod champion is one of the top players of PCAP’s Manila Indios Bravos set to play in the 2nd Gov. Henry S. Oaminal Open Chess Tournament on July 9 to 10 at AYA Hotel and Residences, Clarin, Misamis Occidental.

After losing to Elorta in the sixth round, Abris, one of the top players of College of St. Benilde, defeated Rigil Kent Rosell Pahamtang in the seventh round, then halving the point with Piel in the eight round and Bernardino Jr. in the ninth and final round to score 7.0 points. He received the runner-up prize of P20,000 for his efforts, continued Bernardino.

“I am very happy with my victory because almost all of the top players in Dapitan, Dipolog, Polanco and nearby provinces as well as those from Metro Manila joined the tournament,” said the pride of Mandaluyong City Abris, who got the highest tie break points in the huge group of 7.0 pointers.

Piel, AGM Dennis Bernas of Iloilo, Jerish John Velarde of Imus City, Cavite, Vincent Ryu Dimayuga of Lipa City, Batangas and Irwin Aton of Davao City also finished the tournament with similar 7.0 points.

Bernardino Jr., who held Abris into a fighting draw in their King’s Indian Attack skirmish, wound up over-all 15th placers after the tie break points were applied.

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Bernardino Jr., who remained undefeated in nine games with 4 wins and 5 draws to raise his total to 6.5 points, a good for a share of 8th to 19th placers in the one-day event, hosted by Mayor Frederick Seth “Bullet” Jalosjos, who is also a part of the board of directors of the National Chess Federation of the Philippines headed by chairman/president Prospero “Butch” Pichay Jr.

Meanwhile, three Negros Oriental players got a podium finish in the 2024 National Age Group Chess Championships Grandfinals and the Mayor Frederick Seth “Bullet” Jalosjos FIDE Rated Open Rapid Chess Tournament here.

Noel “Nonoy” Bernil Jr. made the Tanjay City, Negros Oriental proud anew as he shared top honors with Justin Jed Ortillo of Cabuyao City, Laguna at the conclusion of the boys’ Under-12 division. Ortillo took the rapid crown while Bernil settled for second place.

Bernil is schedule to represent the country in the upcoming Eastern Youth Chess Championships on July 12 to 21 in Penang, Malaysia.

NM-elect Michael Jan Stephen Rosalem Inigo of Bayawan City, Negros Oriental took the runner-up honors in the boys’ Under-18 division.

The 16-year-old Inigo, incoming Grade 11 pupil at the Lyceum of the Philippines University Cavite in General Trias City, also won the top Under 18 Boys category award in the Mayor Frederick Seth “Bullet” Jalosjos FIDE Rated Open Rapid Chess Tournament.

He is set to play in the Palarong Pambansa to be hosted this year by Cebu City on July 9 to 16.

Arleah Cassandra Sapuan of Valencia, on the other hand, wound up second place in the Under 18 Girls category award in the Mayor Frederick Seth “Bullet” Jalosjos FIDE Rated Open Rapid Chess Tournament.

The 17-year-old Sapuan, an incoming Grade 12 student of the multi-titled Far Eastern University finished 6th place in the standard competition of the 2024 National Age Group Chess Championships Grandfinals.

Earlier, Dapitan City Mayor Seth Frederick “Bullet” P. Jalosjos and  Princess Rane Magallanes made the ceremonial moves kicking off the one-day tournament also graced by Former Dipolog City Vice Mayor Edelburgo “Bebs” Cheng, NCFP Director Engr. Rey Cris Urbiztondo, NCFP CEO Jayson Gonzales , Chief Arbiter IA Reden Cruz and Mam Sendelyn Magallanes.

(The author, who is now based in New York City, used to be the editor of two daily newspapers in Iloilo.—Ed)

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