There were plenty of events offered towards the end of 2022 with many organizers scrambling to complete their programs for the calendar year as countries worldwide began easing their COVID restrictions. Starting with the 44th Olympiad in Chennai, India, endless waves of FIDE World and Regional events – mainly for the Juniors, took turns and sometimes, in succession or overlapping, as the organizers press forward due to the short runaway before 2022 draws to an end. The curtain closure event for 2022 will be the FIDE World Rapid and Blitz Chess Championships to be held from the 25th until the 31st of December in Almaty, Kazakhstan.
ASIAN CONTINENTAL CHESS CHAMPIONSHIP – INDIA
It was saddening that two of our National players – FM Chan Kim Yew and WCM Nithyalakhsmi Sivanesan, were not able to participate in the event due to visa issues. Both were geared to participate in the Asian level event but due to the long wait and tedious process of getting the visa, it would be too late for them to get the approval to enter India.
WORLD JUNIOR CHESS CHAMPIONSHIP – ITALY
National Champion CM Tan Jun Ying was our sole representative at the event after our lady players – the first was WCM Chua Jia-Tien followed by Nur Faiqah Aminuddin after Jia-Tien declined, where both had to forego the spots due to family matters.
The Penang lad had a slow start but picked up the pace in rounds 7 and 8 with 2 consecutive wins over his higher-rated opponents, and drew in round 9 with another 2400+ player to put himself in contention for a spot in the top 20 of the event. Sadly, he lost the penultimate and final rounds leaving him only with 5 points out of 11 rounds. CM Jun Ying ended the event in 76th place – 11 places higher than his initial ranking out of 120 players, and earned valuable rating points to surpass the 2200 mark.
The FIDE World Junior Chess Championship was held in Sardinia, Italy from the 11th until the 23rd of October 2022. A total of 58 countries took part in the event with 186 players registering for both the Open and Girls events.
CM Tan Jun Ying at the World Rapid and Blitz in Sardinia, Italy recently
ASIAN JUNIOR CHESS CHAMPIONSHIP – PHILIPPINES
Another Penang junior player – WCM Chua Jia-Tien, managed to join the ASIAN Junior Girls Chess Championship as the sole representative from Malaysia after missing the World Junior event. There was no takeup for the Open/Boys event as MCF had not received any applications from interested players to join the Regional tournament.
Ranked 10th out of 20 players, WCM Jia-Tien earned 4 points from 9 rounds to finish in the 16th spot. The event was hosted by the National Chess Federations of the Philippines in the city of Tagaytay from the 17th to the 26th of November 2022.
WCM Chua Jia Tien
WORLD RAPID and BLITZ CHESS CHAMPIONSHIP – KAZAKHSTAN
WIM Siti Zulaikha Foudzi will be the only Malaysian player to compete at the upcoming World Rapid and Blitz Chess Championship to be held from Christmas Day until New Year’s Eve as FIDE closes its curtain of activities for 2022. As required by FIDE, WIM Zulaikha’s entry to the event was supported and confirmed by the Malaysian Chess Federation in view of her status as the current National Women Champion. Similar offers we also extended to CM Tan Jun Ying as the current National Champion and Poh Yu Tian as the current Rapid and Blitz Champion to play in the Open event but both players declined due to conflicting schedules.
Hosted by the city of Almaty in Kazakhstan, the championship will start with 9 rounds of Rapid event over the first 3 days and 17 rounds of Blitz event over the next 2 days. The event offers a whopping USD $1 million to the eventual winner – the top 35 places in each Rapid and Blitz event for Men and the top 15 finishers in the women’s event.
The Malaysian Chess Federation wishes WIM Siti Zulaikha all the best and success in the event.
WIM Siti Zulaikha Foudzi after winning the Malaysian Chess Championship for the 9th time after a 14-year break. She is seen here with Runner Up – WCM Chia Jia Tien.