Barbosa leads Filipino winners in Malaysia chess opener

KUALA LUMPUR, Malaysia – Grandmasters Oliver Barbosa and Sergei Tiviakov of the Netherlands led the winning spree of favorites in the opening round of the DYTM Raja Nazrin Shah International 2012 on Tuesday at the Olympic Sports Hotel here.

Barbosa, the defending champion, manhandled Steven O’Reilly after 42 moves of Dutch while Tiviakov, the tournament top seed, took the scalp of Ngo Thi Kim Tuyen after 49 moves of Reti.

“The first round is one of the toughest rounds in any tournament. It usually sets the tone of how you’re going to perform,” said Barbosa, fresh from helping the Philippine men’s team to a respectable 21st place finish in the recent World Chess Olympiad in Istanbul, Turkey.

The usual suspects made their presence felt early.

GMs Mark Paragua and Darwin Laylo of the Philippines, Nguyen Anh Dung and Cao Sang of Vietnam, Deepan Chakkravarthy J. of India, Vakhidov Tahir of Uzbekistan, Raset Ziatdinov of the United States and Wong Meng Kong of Singapore downed their respective rivals in the opener.

Paragua toppled Chakravarthi K.; Laylo subdued Jodi Setyaki Azarya; Nguyen outdueled Tan Li Ting; Cao spanked Handjojo Limono; Deepan beat Fong Yit San; Tahir dumped Peter Frost; Ziatdinov thrashed Mahmood Mohd Ezmi; and Wong defeated Razali Hamzah.

GM-elect Ronald Dableo and GM hopefuls International Masters Oliver Dimakiling and Rolando Nolte also opened their accounts with full point each.

Dableo scalped Siavosh Vojdani after 35 moves of English Opening; Dimakiling outplayed reigning Malaysian senior champion Lim Kian Hwa in their Sicilian Defense encounter; and Nolte outmaneuvered Mikgail Kok after just 21 moves of Sicilian.

Dimakiling and Nolte are both seeking their third and final norm to complete GM status.

In other results involving Filipinos, National Master Edmundo Legaspi won over Chan Yi Meng Ryan after 43 moves of French; NM Stewart Manaog crushed  Zirath Hakan after 26 moves of Stonewall Opening; Jimson Bitoon downed Edward Lee after 49 moves of Petroff Opening; and NM Almario Marlon Bernardino, Jr. halved the point with Malaysian Abdul Jalil Syahril after 44 moves of Sicilian.

The tournament organized by Polgar Chess Asia for Kuala Lumpur Chess Association (KLCA) is supported by the Malaysian Chess Federation and sponsored by Masterskill Education Group. Noli Cruz

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