Short, The ‘Trouncer’, wins! – Moja Chess Extravaganza 2022 Day 9

GM Nigel Short is the winner of the GM/IM norm section of the Moja Chess Extravaganza 2022! The event was concluded after a grueling 9 days of exciting chess and activities held in Kimberley in the Northern Cape province of South Africa.

Prize Giving

GM Nigel Short, the vice President of FIDE and a former Candidates finalist, gave a rousing speech at the closing ceremony. He thanked the organizers and the players for this great event.

First Prize R40 000 went to Short, Second prize was GM Sahaj Grover who took home R25 000, third prize was GM Hesham Abdelrahman with R15 000 and lastly 4th prize was GM Amir Zaibi wo went home with R7 000.

“I think this has been a good experience actually for the organizers. There were many things done very well and there will be one or two things which could be improved next time but it’s been overall a very fine event.”

~Event winner, British grandmaster and FIDE Vice President, GM Nigel Short
Then went on Twitter for the usual tongue-in-cheek quips

Final Round Games

Siame Kela Kaulele vs GM Nigel Short

Kela tried to surprise GM Short with the rare Levitzky attack 2. Bg5!? which can transpose to many opening lines including the Trompowsky, which Kela knows a thing or two about. GM Short was having none of that and his classical response went 2…f6 instead of the common h6 or Nf6 we see at the lower levels. White quickly lost the thread and lost.

FM Daniel Barrish vs Christiaan Acho

Acho again employed his trusted Czech Benoni defense but Daniel gave him no chances and overran him in the resulting positions. 1-0

FM Banele Mhango vs GM Amir Zaibi

GM Amir Zaibi on the board | Cosmos Chipepo for ACM

Banele and GM Zaibi went into a Slav but the GM was in no mood for the long grinds he saw in previous rounds from Banele, especially with the fatigue of playing in the last round, so peace was offered and accepted quickly.

FM Keith Khumalo vs GM Abdelrahman Hesham

Keith and GM Hesham played a Bogo-Indian that rapidly went south in the endgame with the knight maneuver Na4 to b6. This allowed the GM to penetrate the back rank and he easily won the resulting position.

Alessandro Parodi vs GM Sahaj Grover

GM Grover and Alessandro played a quick draw in an English opening and avoided a protracted battle in the last round.

A big thank you to all for the riveting games!
Final Ranking Crosstable

The 4 GMs took their positions as per their relative ELO strength, but in the bottom half the biggest rating gain was from Christiaan Acho who gained a whopping 104.4 points for an outstanding performance! FM Daniel Barrish also gained about 10 ELO points. The rest of the guys was suffered a rating drainage.

This was truly a unique experience and we should thank the organizers Dr. Jabu Mokoena and Warren Ahjum and their team and sponsors for bringing over the first ever GM event to the Northern Cape. This was for the very first time ever that a chess grandmaster ever set foot, sat down and played a game of chess in the Northern Cape province of South Africa – and they brought out FOUR of them!

To see more of what other activities and fun sights the Northern Cape provides you can go on their website using this link.

The Moja Chess Extravaganza is a chess event organized by the Moja Chess Club, under the auspices of Frances Baard Chess, Northern Cape Chess and the Northern Cape Tourism board. Chess players both local and international have been invited to participate in Over-The-Board chess activities to be held at the Mittah Seperepere Convention Centre which is situated in Kimberley, Northern Cape on 18 – 22 March 2022. A GM/IM norm event is also scheduled to run concurrently between 18 – 27 March 2022.

Prizes for the event are:

GM/IM Norm event – PRIZE FUND: R87,000-00
Prestige Section – PRIZE FUND: R28,500-00
Ladies Section – PRIZE FUND: R18,250-00
B Section – U1600 – PRIZE FUND: R8,550-00
C – Section – U1100 – PRIZE FUND: R3,950-00
D – Section – U900 (Born 2011 or later )- PRIZE FUND: R1,750-00

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