Upsets mar early rounds of age group tilt

UPSETS marred the first two rounds of the 2012 National Age Group Chess Championships Visayas leg at the Cabagnot Training Center in Kalibo, Aklan.

James Andrew Balbona of Cebu stunned the more fancied Israelito Rilloraza of Las Pinas in the first round of the Open Under-12 category while Jeremy Pepito defeated veteran internationalist Dennis Gutierrez III of Pangasinan in the second round of the OU-10.

Highly-touted Alekhine Nouri of Negros Occidental also bowed to Gil Casa, Jr. in the first round before beating Nino Protacio in the second round to stay in the hunt in the OU-8.

Woman FIDE Master Cherry Ann Mejia of La Salle had the worst performance so far among the favorites, losing to Christine Laz in the opener and settling for a draw with Adelaide Lim in the second round.

The other seeded players were unperturbed.

Joel Pimentel of St. Benilde, Marc Nazario of the University of the Philippines, McDominique Lagula of Far Easter U and Keith Duval Ibaoc of Davao remained undefeated in OU-20.

FIDE Master Paulo Bersamina of Pasay City and Vince Angelo Medina of FEU were also perfect after two rounds to share the lead in OU-14 and OU-16, respectively.

In the distaff side, Woman National Master Jan Jodilyn Fronda of La Salle, Mikee Charlene Suede of UP and Jessa Marie Balbona of Cebu were on top of the U-20 category.

Also setting the pace in their respective categories were Jazelle Villarin of Cebu in U-16; Samantha Glo Revita of Pangasinan in U-14; and Cristine Delos Reyes of Misamis Oriental in U-10.

Meanwhile, the Visayas leg of the National Juniors Chess Championships will begin tomorrow in the same venue. Registration is now ongoing at the Cabagnot Training Center in Kalibo, Aklan.

For more information, contact Aklan Provincial Sports Coordinator National Master Wilfredo Neri at 09205636732/09228930866; IA Gene Poliarco at 09237309445; or the NCFP secretariat at Noli Cruz

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