NASSAU, BAHAMAS- The game of chess in the country has remained active in the face of the COVID-19 pandemic.
The Bahamas Chess Federation (BCF) held a successful event and exhibition of games online. The BCF’s Online Grand Prix Group of Tournaments has been active over the past three and a half months, ever since the COVID-19 pandemic reached the shores of The Bahamas. It was the first time the BCF held a major event online.
“The BCF would like to thank everyone for supporting our events. It has been a crazy couple of months, so for our first online grand prix attempt, we are happy with the turnout and the level of competition. Congratulations to all our winners and participants,” said a federation representative through e-mail.
The BCF Junior Grand Prix ended with the first Online Junior Chess Championship, which hosted players from New Providence and Eleuthera.
Candidate Master (CM) Nathan Smith came out on top in the overall junior championship, going undefeated in the four-round tournament. The grand prize was a marble chess set.
“This event was part of the BCF’s continuing strategy to develop a larger online presence. Once established in conjunction with our development of online chess training, we will be able to positively impact the growth and development of chess on all of our Family Islands, as well as interact with fellow players. Congratulations to all of our winners. We would like to especially highlight our Family Island participants – Eleuthera’s Kezia Johnson from North Eleuthera High School and Darrianna Bethel from Samuel Guy Pinder All-Age School who came first and second, respectively, for the Family Islands,” stated the federation representative.
Aryan Shetty won the under-8 division, Johnson was the Family Islands winner and Bethel finished second.
In the under-12 division, Max White finished first, Chika Pride was second and Rashaad Horton finished third. Avian Pride was first in the under-14 division, Deon Pinder was second and Tadan Ferguson finished third. In the under-16 division, Entropian was first, FiveStar242 finished second and Curtis Pride and Noah Albury were tied for third. Trinity Pinder won the under-20 division.
The masters grand prix consisted of two sections – Masters and Casual. Several of the players chose to remain anonymous.
Chesscomet came out on top in the Masters section followed by Daijah Jonson and Kenny504 Ashley Gibson prevailed in the Casual section followed by Juffure Collie-Russell.
“This marks a significant milestone in the development of chess in the country; we have now developed the initial infrastructure to be able to offer events and training opportunities that can include chess players from across The Bahamas,” said the federation representative.
The BCF will be offering training tournaments in short order. To participate, interested persons can join the BCF lichess.org team at the website https://lichess.org/team/bahamas-chess-federation.