June 28, 2014
Asia's first Grandmaster Eugene Torre and Woman International Master Catherine Pereña bag the title in their respective division after the final round of the 2014 National Chess Championships/Battle of the Grandmasters held Saturday at the Athletes' Dining Hall, PSC Canteen, RMSC, Manila. GM Torre, in the open division, prevailed over FIDE Master Paulo Bersamina in 57 moves of a Torre Attack while WIM Pereña stopped Woman National Master Jean Karen Enriquez in 30 moves of a Modern Benoni to become Champions of this year's edition of the tournament.
Runner-up in the open division is top seed GM John Paul Gomez who drew his game with IM Jan Emmanuel Garcia in a repetition of moves of a Symmetrical English while in the Women's division, WNM Christy Lamiel Bernales was held to draw by Arvie Lozano in 68 moves of a Reti Opening: New York and Capablanca Systems to settle for second place.
Third placers are IM Bersamina and in the women's division Woman FIDE Master Cherry Ann Mejia who beat WNM Jedara Docena in 43 moves of an English Opening. WNM Docena settled for fourth place followed by WNM Enriquez in fifth and Lozano in sixth.
Kudos belong to WFM Janelle Mae Frayna in the open division who achieved an International Master and Woman Grandmaster norms in the tournament. She settled for fourth place when she beat International Master Oliver Dimakiling in 70 moves of an English Opening.She registered more victories in the tournament than the male players including GM Torre and GM Gomez.
GM Darwin Laylo defeated IM Joel Pimentel in 25 moves of a Fianchetto Gruenfeld to place fifth followed by IM Garcia in sixth and GM Joey Antonio in seventh who drew with GM Richard Bitoon in a Sicilian Moscow Variation. Finally barging into the win column is GM Rogelio Barcenilla who beat NM Roel Abelgas in 31 moves of an English Opening to place 8th followed by 9th IM Dimakiling 10th GM Bitoon 11th NM Abelgas and 12th IM Pimentel.
Completing the matches and ranking in the Women's division: WFM Shania Mae Mendoza defeated Aurora Kin Dantes in 46 moves of a Scandinavian/Center Counter Defense to place 7th followed by Dantes in 8th, Ruth Aubrey de Guzman in 9th who beat Queenie Lyn Reyes in 70 moves of a Torre, London and Colle Systems. Reyes settled for 10th and Gladys Hazelle Romero who took the bye landed in 11th place.
The event is being held to select some members of the Philippine Team that will compete in the World Chess Olympiad to be held August 1-15, 2014 in Tromso, Norway. It is being organized by the National Chess Federation of the Philippines (NCFP) spearheaded by its Chairman and President Prospero A. Pichay, Jr. and Secretary General Abraham N. Tolentino in cooperation with the Philippine Sports Commission (PSC) headed by its Chairman Ricardo R. Garcia and with the support of the Philippine Olympic Committee (POC) headed by President Jose Cojuangco, Jr.