Zambians dominate chess tournament

ZAMBIAN chess star Gillan Bwalya
ZAMBIAN chess star Gillan Bwalya

FOUR Zambians are in the Top Five after five rounds of the ongoing Prestige Botswana Open Chess tournament at Legae Academy in Gaborone.
But local star Providence Oatlhotse has upstaged the Zambian legion by sitting pretty on top of the log with a perfect five points while top seed Chitumbo Mwali is in close second with 4.5 points.
Godwin Phiri was in third place with four points while Gillan Bwalya and Prince Mulenga were on 3.5 points as the tournament went into the sixth round.
After a crowded top where up to six players were on three points after as many rounds, natural selection started separating the players as Oatlhotse beat Zambian Bwalya in the fourth round and then followed that up with a fifth round win over Mulenga.
For these wins, Oatlhotse won himself a tough sixth round game against Mwali with the winner expected to have the initiative of bagging the title.

Meanwhile, Mwali’s run was only interrupted by a third round draw against Mulenga but has beat four other Tswana’s and should be looking forward to making Oatlhotse as his fifth victim.
Phiri is having an amazingly good tournament where he has won four games and lost just once to Kokome Oaitse, a local and in the second round.
In the sixth round, Phiri plays Bwalya, who also has one defeat and that was to Oatlhotse and will be counting on this game to resurrect his fortunes.
The three other Zambians at the tournament in the likes of Musatwe Simutowe, the elder brother to the first black African Grandmaster Amon, is on 3.5 points and plays Abhiram Sasitharan.
Judah Simulundu is half-a-point away from Simutowe and plays Katlano Seforo while Jay Berna

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