SPORTS

Chess Trio For Oceania qualifier

Russell Taloga and University of the South Pacific student Zen Borg will join Candidate Master Manoj Kumar at the 2017 Oceania Zonal Tournament in New Zealand next week. Yat Sen
09 Jan 2017 11:00
Chess Trio For Oceania qualifier
From left: Zen Borg, Manoj Kumar and Russell Taloga during their final training session. They will depart for Auckland on Friday.

Russell Taloga and University of the South Pacific student Zen Borg will join Candidate Master Manoj Kumar at the 2017 Oceania Zonal Tournament in New Zealand next week.

Yat Sen student Taloga, 16, will makes his international debut while 19-year-old Borg plays in his second tournament abroad.

In contrast, veteran CM Kumar plays in his seventh zonal event.

“I’ve seen firsthand junior players dominating the zonal and the level of competition improving in the Oceania region,” Kumar said.

The national champion said Fiji hope to attain new titles and tipped Taloga and Borg to be the players to watch.

“Participating in the Oceania events will make them stronger and they can aspire to be selected in the Olympiad team very soon,” Kumar said.

“Russell and Zen have a good chance to get CM titles because they were the top junior players in Fiji last year,”

A player has to score at least 4.5 points at the zonal event to get a CM title.

Fiji has eight Candidate Master (CM), one Woman Candidate Master (WCM), and two Woman FIDE Master (WFM) titles.

The Oceania zonal tournament is a biennial event.  This year, it is hosted by the New Zealand Chess Federation and will be held in Auckland on January 14-20.

The winners in the Open and Women’s divisions will qualify for the Chess World Cup 2017, a 128-player tournament in Tbilisi, Georgia on September 1- 25.

Fiji hosted the Oceania Zonal in 2013 and is bidding to host the 2019 tournament.
-Fiji Chess Federation

 

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