(The Philippine Star) | Updated April 13, 2013 - 12:00am
Boxing icon Manny Pacquiao (right) poses with Grandmaster Eugene Torre during the launching of the Manny Pacquiao Cup Asian Continental Open and Women’s Chess Championships at the Midas Hotel.
MANILA, Philippines - The $100,000 Manny Pacquiao Cup Asian Continental Open and Women’s Chess Championships will be held May 18-26 with the country’s leading grandmasters and upcoming masters battling it out with a crack foreign field at the Midas Hotel in Pasay City.
“We thank the champ, Rep. Pacquiao, for his support. He is an avid chess player and will give many Filipinos the chance to participate and see top grandmasters in action. We expect the best players from all over Asia to join and we will show once again how strong Phiippine chess is,” said National Chess Federation of the Philippines chairman/president Butch Pichay.
The tournament is held under the auspices of the NCFP, Asian Chess Federation and FIDE, and organized by the Eugene Torre Chess Foundation.
The top five players will qualify to the World Cup set in August in Tromso, Norway. GMs Wesley So and Oliver Barbosa are the early qualifiers. Barbosa finished in the top five in last year’s Asian Continental in Ho Chi Minh, Vietnam while So qualified from the Zonal Championship organized by Tagaytay Mayor Bambol Tolentino last January in Tagaytay City.
The Asian Women’s champion will advance to the 2014 Women’s World Championship tournament.
The tournament will be a nine-round Swiss system with games scheduled daily. This is the fourth time the Philippines is hosting the Asian Continental after the 2007 meet in Cebu City and in 2009 and 2010 in Subic.
Asian Chess Federation president Sheikh Sultan bin Khalifah Al Nahyan will be the guest of honor during the opening of the event.
Concurrent with the championship will be a FIDE Trainers Seminar on May 20-24, organized by the Florencio Campomanes Chess Academy under the auspices of the Asian Chess Federation and conducted by FIDE Trainers Commission Secretary GM Efstratios Grivas of Greece and GM Eugene Torre.
Toree, Asia’s first GM, was recently conferred the FIDE Senior Trainer title, the only FST in Southeast Asia.
For details, call Pat Lee at the NCFP office at 0927-7209260 or email firstname.lastname@example.org. For seminar inquiries, contact Elias Lao at 0926-2378876.