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Zone 4.3 players expected in Mdina race

The Mdina Chess Championship finals is expected to wear an international face after some foreign players submitted requests to take part in the competition set for next week.

Southern Region Chess League (SRCL) chairperson, Terence Namaona, said they were not surprised with the international requests mainly from Zimbabwe, Zambia, Botswana and Angola, among others.

Many players that took part in the Zone 4.3 Southern Africa chess championship got wind of the Mdina championship and they now want to compete.

“There is a lot of hype ahead of the Mdina finals. We took advantage of the Zone 4.3 chess championship to promote the Mdina National Championship and now we have received over 15 international requests,” he said.

Namaona said some international players were attracted by the open section’s prize money which is at K250,000 (about US$568). Last year’s Mdina national champion got K100,000.

“The prize money is just awesome and we encourage local players to finalise their preparations to enhance their chances of winning the prize money,” he said.

Last month the South Africa based sponsor Tiwone Mdina bought new trophies for this year’s championship.

The Polytechnic engineering graduate has been sponsoring Mdina championship for the past five years and currently Peter Jailosi is the title holder. Never fading veteran Kajani Kaunda won the first edition and was followed by Edgar Khan on second before Chiletso Chipanga won the third. Malawi’s first ever Fide Master Gerald Mphungu lifted the fourth edition.

Ahead of this year’s race, Mdina partnered with fellow South Africa-based compatriot Wezi Chipeta to increase the sponsorship to K1 million. Mdina has provided K600,000 while Chipeta has donated K400,000 towards the course. The amount does not include fees to cover for promotional material such as T/ shirts.

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