Following a six-month period of non-activity in tangible chess playing, the Guyana Chess Federation (GCF) is back on stage in the local limelight. The GCF hosted its first chess competition last Sunday at the YMCA. It was a one day seven-round, rapid tournament in which players were allowed 20 minutes per player per game. In 40 minutes therefore, the game had to be completed. Guyana’s chess Olympian Anthony Drayton took first place in the senior category, and Joshua Gopaul did the same among the juniors. Drayton won his seven games comfortably, from among the local and foreign participants.
Although the GCF called the tournament suddenly, the turnout was fair especially among the younger players. Owing to the fact that youths the world over engage in speed chess on the internet, where one can choose an opponent at random, it is not surprising that the one-day rapid tournament favoured and refreshed the school-aged teenagers. The older folks prefer more time to be given on the clock. St Stanislaus College boasted an excellent turnout with most of
its seasoned chess-playing students represented. Drayton performed flawlessly by beating all comers and should be applauded for his effort. Naturally, he must be a prime contender for the national chess championship.
The one-day rapid comes at a time when persons are longing to actually play live chess, and revive the competitive mode. It is only through playing chess regularly can we make progress in our development in the game. Chess players would welcome longer tournaments, in addition to the lightning games (blitz) and rapid formats.