Bajans lose chess opener
BARBADOS’ men’s and women’s teams lost their opening matches at the 39th World Chess Olympiad in Russia.
The men lost 3 1/2 to 1/2 against No. 22 seeded Slovakia, whose team included four grandmasters, while the women went under 4-0 against No. 35 seeded Peru.
In men’s action, FIDE master Delisle Warner drew a tense game on Board 3 against grandmaster Jan Markos to avoid the 4-0 rubber for the Bajans, while international masters Kevin Denny and Terry Farley, along with Martyn Del Castilho, lost to grandmasters Sergei Movsesian, Lubomir Ftacnik and Tomas Petrik respectively.
Jamaica’s men came tantalisingly close to scoring the first upset when they narrowly missed drawing with Norway.
The Norwegian team, seeded 23rd out of a field of 150, were made to pay for not playing their top player, world No. 1, grandmaster Magnus Carlsen, and barely managed to beat 97th seeded Jamaica 2 1?2 to 1 1?2 .
Top seed Russia did not have a perfect start, only managing a 3 1?2 to 1?2 win over 75th seed Ireland, thanks to a draw on Board 1 by Irish international master Sam Collins against grandmaster Alexander Grischuk.
Defending men’s champions Armenia also found the opening round not to their liking as 80th seed Costa Rica made them work for a 3-1 win. (PR/HG)