Ricky Zililo, Senior Sports Reporter
NATIONAL team player Roy Mwadzura atoned for failing to clinch being last month’s Joshua Mqabuko Nkomo Memorial Chess tournament by lifting the inaugural online Heroes Chess tournament that ended on Heroes Day.
Mwadzura was runner-up to Cyril Chigodo in the Joshua Mqabuko Nkomo competition, but edged him in the Heroes’ event with a score of 76 points to pocket $1 600.
Chigodo was second with 70 points, Tawanda Zambuko was third, tied on 69 points with Gift Sithole, and Vitalis Mapuranga, who will represent Zimbabwe at this weekend’s Olympiad online, came fifth with 64 points.
The tournament was organised by the Victoria Falls-based Project Chess Zimbabwe and sponsored by Crystal Candy, with Zimbabwe Chess Federation providing technical assistance.
The competition had 90 participants competing in four categories, elite section for highly-rated players, open, ladies and Under-14s.
Mwadzura played nine games in the first round and 13 matches in the second round on his way to winning the tournament.
The open section saw Craig Mandimutsira coming first with 54 points, although he was tied on points with Prosper Mateveke, while Jemitias Hamandishe finished third with 53 points.
Linda Shaba came first in the women’s section with 78 points, with Kudzanai Charinda emerging second on 77 points and Rumbidzai Sango in third place with 63 points.
The Under-14 title went to Nokulunga Ndlovu, who garnered 79 points, while Bongani Tshuma was runner-up with 72 points and Carol Ndlovu came third with 70 points.
Clive Mphambela, national co-ordinator of Project Chess Zimbabwe, declared the tournament a success.
“This was the first ever online open tournament played in a very innovative and unique format.
“The tournament was successful because of participants’ excellence and sportsmanship. Our hearty gratitude to Crystal Candy Zimbabwe who have been faithful sponsors of Zimbabwe Chess for the past four years. Even Covid-19 did not stop them from extending their generous hand,” said Mphambela.
“To the Zimbabwe national team players who used this event to prepare for the Olympiad clashes, I trust the event was a useful last minute polishing act. This is the third major online event organised by Project Chess Zimbabwe this year and we will strive to keep improving,” he said. – @ZililoR