Fide Master, Gerald Mphungu, underlined his class when he became the champion of the inaugural Stitches Boutique Southern Region Chess League (SRCL) Tournament at Steers Garden in Blantyre on Sunday.
Mphungu collected six points having won six of the seven games to beat closest challengers.
It was a tight contest that saw Joseph Nyambalo, a Candidate Master, tying on 5.5 points each with Davie Mfiti.
Arbiters had to use Buchholz Tie-Break System to separate the duo.
At the end, Nyambalo finished on second position with Mfiti settling for third place.
Mphungu said winning the championship was a better way to start the year.
“I had to win to show my opponents what they should expect from me this year. I am now motivated and I believe that my opponents have received my message. They should be fighting for other positions,” he said.
Mphungu received K40,000 where as Nyambalo pocketed K30,000 while Mfiti got K20, 000.
In the ladies’ section, Ellen Mpinganjira was the winner with Margaret Ngugama finishing as runner-up.
The pair also tied at two points each but they were also separated by the tie-breaker. Mpinganjira went away with K10,000.
Southern Region Chess League (SRCL) Chairperson, Wasoka Chirwa, said the tournament was timely as it helped the players to be active.
“We were on break and now our season has started. On behalf of the committee, I thank Stitches Boutique for sponsoring the tournament. I also ask individuals and companies to emulate what Stitches Boutique has done,” he said.
Stitches Boutique Marketing Executive, Mphonyana Macheso, said they were impressed with the performance of players and how the committee handled the tournament.
“Our management will definitely evaluate the whole tournament so that we should return bigger and better,” she said.
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