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Chess: Nakanyike gains Women Fide Master status

By David Namunyala

Added 7th January 2019 02:29 PM

The New Year present puts Nakanyike close to attaining her dream of becoming Uganda’s first Woman International Master

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12-yr-old Maria Nakanyike poses with the trophy after finishing second at the Africa Junior Chess Championships. Photo by David Namunyala

The New Year present puts Nakanyike close to attaining her dream of becoming Uganda’s first Woman International Master

African Junior U-20 Championship

Girls

Du Plessis Anika (RSA) 8.5

Nakanyike Maria (UGA) 7

Marape Naledi (BOT) 7 

Open

Fawzy Adham (EGY) 8.5

Mlahleki Vusimuzi (RSA) 6.5

Djabri Massinas (ALG) 5.5 

What more can a 13-yr-old dream of than to climb up the chess ladder when there is still time for advancement?

That is exactly what Maria Nakanyike has always yearned for and attaining a Women Fide Master (WFM) title at the weekend was itself a milestone.

Nakanyike who competed in the girl’s category at the African Junior U20 Championship held at J&M Airport Road Hotel in Entebbe, finished second with 7points behind the champion Anika Du Plessis from South Africa (8.5pts).

To attain this, she beat fellow Ugandans Sarah Nakalyowa, Stella Babirye, Bonita Nakiganda, Happy Namirimu, Gloria Nansubuga, Botswana’s WFM Marape Naledi and Algeria’s Amina Benelfekir.

She only lost to Du Plessis and Kenya’s Cynthia Obondo to end the nine rounds contest with seven wins and two defeats on her way to upgrading her status to a WFM title holder.

 

This put Nakanyike level on 7pts with Naledi but because she had a better tiebreak, she finished ahead of the player from Botswana.

The New Year present puts Nakanyike close to attaining her dream of becoming Uganda’s first Woman International Master (WIM) by the time she makes 15 years.

“I am happy that I at least finished among the medal brackets although I would have wanted to win that gold,” she said.

Meanwhile in the Open category, Egyptian’s Fawzy Adham was dominant, finishing with 8.5 points to claim the gold medal and the championship trophy.

He beat South Africa’s Mlahleki Vusimuzi (6.5 points) and Algeria’s Djabri Massinas lgeria (5.5pts).

The event attracted 26 participants from host Uganda, Algeria, Botswana, Egypt, Kenya, Namibia, Nigeria, South Africa and Somalia.

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