Thursday, December 20, 2012

National Juniors: New leaders emerge

The fifth round of the on-going National Juniors at DAT Chess Connections produced new leaders. Fong Yit San beat Mark Siew to take over the lead. Amier Hamzah joined him with a win over Tan Jun Feng.

Yit San and Amier Hamzah will play each other in the sixth round and this could be a decider if Yit San wins as he will have met most of contenders.

In the girls section, Tan Li Ting beat Nur Najiha in the fifth round. This means that Li Ting have beaten both sisters who have been very successful at the top in women's chess for the past year. I'm quite curious whether Li Ting have made a quantum leap in strength or Najiha and Nabila have reached a plateau in their chess. This does happen and it takes a shift in their chess training or mind-set to continue their progress beyond this.

I'm quite happy to see Nithyalakshmi  Sivanesan share the lead with a win over Kelly Lim. She has been around for some time now. It's just that the quartet of Li Ting, Najiha, Nabila and Camilia have been dominating the women's chess scene. It is good to see other girls challenging them and take them out of their comfort zone.

Nithyalakshmi  will play Li Ting in the sixth round. Both have already played Nabila and Najiha so this could be a decider for the title. I prefer to see a Nithyalakshmi  win to generate more interest in the womens chess scene as she is not considered a favourite for the title. Will there be upsets on the top boards for the sixth round? Let's wait a while to see :)


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