Chess: 6 schools compete in the Cesafi tournament

Chess players from USC (left) and USJ-R (right) take action during the Cesafi Chess Tournament. | Glendale G. Rosal Pictures

CEBU CITY, Philippines – Six member schools of the Cebu Schools Athletic Foundation Inc. (Cesafi) showed off their wood-pushing skills during the Cesafi Chess Tournament at Barracks Chess Club on the fourth level of Robinsons Galleria Cebu on Sunday, May 1, 2022 .

The tournament served as a reintroduction of Cesafi member schools to the sport after a two-year hiatus due to the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic.

No less than FIDE (FA) arbiter and famed Cebuano chess player Lincoln Yap oversaw the tournament along with the men’s and women’s divisions.

Chess is one of the 13 official Cesafi sporting events organized for the 2021-2022 season or “mini season”, to revive one of the largest inter-school multi-sport meetings in the country.

The six Cesafi member schools currently in contention at the time of this writing are the defending champions, the University of San Carlos (USC). They are joined by University of San Jose-Recoletos (USJ-R), University of Cebu (UC) Main, Cebu Institute of Technology-University (CIT-U), UC-Lapu-Lapu Campus -Mandaue (UCLM) and the University of the Visayas (UV).

According to FA Yap, they offer a round-robin format, with the top school in both divisions to be awarded as overall champions.

“We are trying to bring chess back to Cesafi given that there was no competition for two years due to the pandemic. This time we are simplifying this tournament a bit because the main season is in September. is like an exhibition tournament just for these Cesafi member schools to get back into action,” said FA Yap.

CHESS CESAFI.  FA Lincoln Yap (left) and Ed Velarde (right) pose for a photo during the Cesafi Chess Tournament at Robinsons Galleria Cebu on Sunday May 1, 2022. |  Glendale G. Rosal

FA Lincoln Yap (left) and Ed Velarde (right) pose for a photo during the Cesafi Chess Tournament at Robinsons Galleria Cebu on Sunday May 1, 2022. | Glendale G. Rosal

FA Yap said they decided not to include the high school division because that was what Cesafi officials asked them to do.

However, he said they were very optimistic about the success of the regular tournament in September.

In 2019, the USC wood pushers dominated the tournament at the same venue. The Warriors topped the men’s and women’s divisions at the college level as well as the boys’ and girls’ divisions at the high school level, dethroning chess powerhouse USJ-R.

For his part, Ed Velarde, the founder of Barracks Chess Club and father of National Master (NM) Jerish Velarde, said it was a welcome sight to see the Cesafi Chess Tournament back on their site. Game.

For five years, the Barracks Chess Club has hosted the Cesafi Chess Tournament.

“We are very happy to welcome everyone back to Barracks Chess Club. We look forward to hosting more tournaments like this, especially the regular season in September,” said Velarde.

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