Pimentel, Salgados stay on top

JOEL PIMENTEL and Lennon Hart Salgados split the point in the fifth round to remain in the lead in the competitive Open Under-20 division of the 13 ASEAN+ Age-Group Chess Championships in Vietnam.

Both players raised their total to 4.0 points, the same output of Indonesian Firman Syah Farid, who drew with FIDE Master Tuan Minh Tran of Vietnam.

Breathing down their necks with 3.5 points were Vietnamese Tran, Phi Hung Vu and Van Thanh Nguyen and Indonesian Saidul Ula Sumardi and Indian Nubairshah Shaikh Mhd.

Austin Jacob Literatus beat Bin Abdullah Iskandar of Singapore to grab a share of the lead in OU-16. The victory pushed his total to 4.0 points and in the company of FM Chan Hung Lu and Duy Trung Nguyen of Vietnam, who halved the point in their top board encounter, and FM Tuan Minh Le also of Vietnam, who scalped countryman FM Quoc Huu Che.

FM Paulo Bersamina and Stephen Rome Pangilinan also stayed in contention in their respective divisions.

Bersamina drew with solo leader Jodi Setyaki Azarya of Indonesia to stay just a half-point behind with 4.0 points in OU-14 while Pangilinan agreed to a truce with Erdene Baasansuren of Mongolia to improve to 4.5 points and keep in sight solo leader FM Anh Khoi Nguyen of Vietnam, who remained perfect in five games in OU-10. Noli S. Cruz

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