The national Chess team to the Olympiad jetted back to the country yesterday morning after a cameo performance at the global stage.
After 15 days of Chess action in the Georgian city of Batumi, the 2018 World Chess Olympiad came to a sweet close for the Kenyan team that saw the ladies rack up two titles from the global competition.
Kenya’s Sasha Mongeli who had previously gained a Women Candidate title at the sports palace arena managed one better and attained the higher Women Fide Master (WCM) title with two rounds to score.
“I am very grateful to KCB for sponsoring us and making our participation to the Olympiad a reality. All my dreams have come true,” said Sasha.
Her score of eight wins out of nine games was one of the best by a Kenyan in the history of the Olympiad. In the final round, Sasha chose the scotch opening her favourite opening as white, against the highly rated Gonzalez Yaribeth of Panama.
Compatriot Lucy Wanjiru who also attained a WCM title stunned her favoured opponent in an entertaining match.
Earlier, Victor Ng’ani dispatched Puerto Rican player in another thrilling game.
Candidate Master Ben Magana defeated Berardi Giancarlo in the final round as Kenya cruised to a 2.5 to 1.5 win over San Marino.
The next Olympiad will be held in the Russian city of Khanty-Mansiysk in 2020 with Belarus hosting the 2022 Olympiad.
Chess Kenya Secretary General and Head of Delegation John Mukabi lauded KCB Bank for the sponsorship towards this year’s event.
“ We thank KCB for their immense support for us to attain the event, this was a huge motivation for the players,” said Mukabi.