PH squads miss semis, make decent finishes in PWD Online Olympiad

Published November 28, 2020, 1:34 PM

by Kristel Satumbaga-Villar

Philippines Team 1 absorbed a 3-1 defeat at the hands of Russia Team 1 to kiss its semifinal bid goodbye at the end of the seven-round preliminaries of the 1st FIDE Online Chess Olympiad for People with Disabilities Friday.

FIDE Master Sander Severino, Henry Lopez and Darry Bernardo yielded to FM Stanislav Babarykin, International Master Andrei Obodchuk and Alexey Smirnov on the boards one to three that sealed the Filipinos’ doom.

Cheyzer Crystal Mendoza was the lone bright spot of the round with a stunning victory over Woman FM Svetlana Gerasimova on board four that prevented a shutout.

With the defeat, PH Team 1 finished in a five-team tie for fifth place with 10 match points, but ended up eighth overall after the tiebreak.

Russia Team 1 topped the prelims with 13 points, followed by Ukraine Team 3 (12 points), Poland Team 1 (11) and Russia Team 2 (11).

Meanwhile, PH Team 2 wound up ninth overall despite toppling 11th pick Croatia 2.5-1.5.

Felix Aguilera and Cheryl Angot delivered the wins on the lower boards for the Filipinos, while Arman Subaste completed the triumph by halving the point with Domagoj Glazar on board two.

Menandro Redor was the lone casualty following a setback to FM Bogdan Bozinovic on top board.

Despite the heartbreak, it was still respectable for both the country’s squads as they emerged the best in Asia.

“Even though we came short of making the semis, we proved we are the best Asian team especially in my team where we did not have any title players,” said Subaste, a former Asian and ASEAN Para Games gold medalist.