Issue of November 10, 2019
     
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Haridas places 2nd in Thailand Chess Open
by Harley F. Palangchao

ONE AT A TIME -- Baguio’s chess wizard Haridas Pascua placed second in the recent Thailand Pattaya Open 2019. Pascua needs to reach the 2500-rating that would make him chess grandmaster. -- Contributed photo

Baguio’s International Master Haridas Pascua placed first runner-up in the Thailand Pattaya Open 2019, as he continues to breach the 2500-rating that would make him chess grandmaster.

The 26-year-old Pascua, a product of the University of Baguio, collected seven points to trail open champion Grandmaster John Paul Gomez, also of the Philippines, who carded 7.5 points.

Veteran grandmaster Buenaventura Villamor placed third with 6.5 points.

Filipino FIDE Masters Nelson Sander III and Arena Grandmaster Henry Lopez are also in the top 10 finishers.

Pascua, who recently tied the knot with his long-time fiancée, has acquired the required norms to qualify him to earn much needed points for the grandmaster title, but he needs to get more points to reach the 2500-Elo rating.

Pascua’s Elo rating now stands at 2425, and he has been on the hunt since the start of the year to reach the required points.

He would become the 20th Filipino male chess Grandmaster if he breaches the 2500-Elo rating.

In May, Pascua won the top honors in the 46th Selangor Open Chess Tournament held in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia.

He has collected 7.5 points on six wins and three draws to win the nine-round tournament and went home with the top prize 6,000 Malaysian ringgit.

Last year, Pascua joined the Philippine Team to the 43rd Chess Olympiad in Butami, Georgia after topping the Battle of Champions: Road to Butami in Makati.

The chess Olympiad that is expecting dozens of teams of women and men from close to 200 countries will be a great venue for Pascua to further improve his Elo rating.

 
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