FIDE Master Alekhine Nouri trounced Christian Olaybal and Johnmari Joseph Lu to seize the solo lead after seven rounds in the Philippine Juniors Chess Championship at the PACE building in Quezon City Monday night.
The pair of wins sent the 15-year-old Nouri at the helm with six points going into the last two rounds.
Unheralded Adrian Othniel Yulo shared the lead with Nouri after the sixth round but slipped to second place with 5.5 points after drawing with Ronald Canino in the seventh.
Nouri would need to score just 1.5 points in the final rounds against Canino and Israelito Rilloroza claim the crown in this event backed by PSC chairman Butch Ramirez, NCFP president Butch Pichay, POC president Bambol Tolentino and Chess Movement, Inc. chairman Ariel Potot.
Both Canino and Rilloroza were tied for third with 4.5 points apiece.
In the girls’ section, Ruelle Canino bested Bea Mendoza to grab the solo lead with seven points going into the final round at press time.
Co-leader Mhage Gerriahlou Sebastian halved the point with reigning juniors champion Vic Glysen Derotas to slip to second with 6.5 points.
The 13-year-old Canino, a native of Cagayan de Oro City, would need to just draw with Derotas to claim the title.