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#AAOIOCC2021: Players Ready to Rumble!

by Ogunsiku Babatunde
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Preliminaries for The Online Championships Kick Off Today!

A very interesting turnout has been recorded for the Arab-African Online Individual Open Chess Championship 2021, which is due to kick off today, the 25th.

Both Arabians and Africans turned up in their volumes, to record a whooping number of participants, which exceeds two thousand (2,000+) individuals from about fifty (50) countries, across the divide.

A Partnership for Chess Development!

The partnership between the Arab Chess Federation and the African Chess Confederation is billed to produce some very interesting platforms for both teams to aid the development of their people, especially the young ones.

The most promising young players will be playing in the semifinals, along with some top players from the divide, who would join the mix. These players, under the age of twenty, are being led by the super promising Malagasy nineteen (19) year old IM Ralison Milanto Harifidy, rated 2335.

International Master Ralison Milanto Harifidy of Madagascar

The first part of the online tournament (preliminary section) will kick off today at 4pm GMT, where the over one thousand and seven hundred (1784) players.

The players, who are under the rating of 2000 (i.e 1999 and below) will be fighting for cash prizes, along with the opportunity to qualify for the male semifinal and the female finals respectively.

Preliminary Main Prizes!

This battle will be held on the Lichess.org platform, just click the link to follow the games. The championship will be followed by the organizing committee, which is inclusive of Sheikh Saud, Bernard Wanjala (Vice-Chairman of the Organizing Committee), and Sami Khader Safarini, (Chairman of the Technical Committee of the Championship).

UAE’s Faisal Mohammed Al Hammadi will be the chief arbiter of the tournament, and it is hoped that this will be a hugely successful online event, to spark a great chess movement between the two partnering teams.

The top thirty (30) players at the end of the two (2) hour arena battle, will qualify to play against the over a hundred and fifty (150+) players with a Fide rating of between 2000 and 2399.

Other Prizes in The Preliminary Section!

These guys will be waiting for the preliminary qualifiers in the semifinal. Furthermore, the top twenty (20) ladies will move on to play against the top ladies across the divide, who have a Fide rating of 2000 and above, in the first final of the championship.

The preliminary battle will be very interesting, because one would find a number of titled players in this section, who will be looking to assert their dominance on the untitled players.

Consequently, one would find a lot of the unrated players with only a Fide Id, who will want to show that they deserve to play at the highest level of the sport. Those who feel they have been denied opportunities for so long.

As we prepare for kickoff, who will you be rooting for?

Sheikh Saud bin Abdul Aziz Al Mualla

Sheikh Saud is the President of the Sharjah Cultural and Chess Club. This is one of the biggest chess clubs in the world. With the guidance and approval of the club’s president, they organize the Sharjah International Chess Academy, as well as participate in a large number of chess and cultural activities within the country and globally.

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