LUNA, Apayao – Impressed with the desire to promote chess and push further the promising young woodpushers of the province who will see action during the 2019 Palarong Pambansa in Davao City, the Apayao Prosecutor’s Office through the initiative of Deputy Prosecutor Atty. Jhon Aguda organized the conduct of the 1st ever Prosecutor’s Invitational Chess Tournament on March 17 at the Apayao Justice Hall, San Isidro, here.
Tuguegarao City stalwart Jake Tumaliuan came out strong and emerged champion with six (6) points from seven (7) outings followed by Apayao pride and Board 1 player of University of Baguio Marc Francis Balanay who clinched 2nd place. Although both have the same points, Tumaliuan had a higher tie break as he outplayed Balanay when they faced each other in the 5th Round.
Chess Trainer of Laoag City Fernando Tamayo ranked 3rd as he held Tumaliuan into a fighting draw in the last round. Tamayo with five (5) points had superior tie break against Tuguegarao City players Jefferson Tugade and Jesus Anastacio who settled for 4th and 5th places, respectively.
For 6th and 7th place, Apayao chess eagles Danilito Montanez and Gerriahzon Sebastian displayed their grit and solid played and were rewarded to be included in the top 11 who got prizes and certificates.
The Grade 8 student of Flora National High School Mhage Gerriahlou Sebastian, the top girl secondary player who will banner the Cordillera Administrative Region in the Palarong Pambansa bagged the top high school category. She was the only female who barged into the top 10. Queenie Heart Orbosis came out strong as she arose as the top elementary scorer.
Atty. Aguda said they organized the event in full support to the four (4) Apayao Palarong Pambansa bound players. “Mr. Danny Dannog, the father of Darlene (Elementary Palarong Pambansa bound player) approached me to possibly assist our players in their plan to join the Narvacan, Ilocos Sur tournament. But I suggested that we rather invite strong players from different places by staging a tournament for in this case our players would not be tired traveling and we can also promote our place,” Atty. Aguda explained.
Although planned in haste, the tournament went smoothly as Atty. Aguda and Dannog patiently coordinated with players and chess supporters. Chess Arbiter Union of the Philippines (CAUP) member Robert Bumatay acted as the Arbiter in which he displayed his mastery in handling pairings and resolving conflicts during the games.
“This is for sure not the first and last tournament here in Apayao. We will make it more prestigious and we would want it to be a two-day event so that our visitors-players will also have the chance to visit our beautiful sceneries,” Atty. Aguda underscored.
The Deputy Prosecutor acknowledged the assistance of Provincial Tourism Officer Rebecca Mamba for the tables and chairs which were used during the tournament. Atty. Aguda also expressed his appreciation to the Provincial Prosecutor family as well as the Apayao Justice Hall family and Apayao coaches and parents for the venue and preparation of foods and other materials needed for the event. He thanked also the Provincial Government of Apayao steered by Governor Elias C. Bulut, Jr. for the full support for this kind of sports activity.
The chess tournament drew chess enthusiasts from the provinces of Regions 1, 2 and the Cordillera Administrative Region particularly coming from Baguio City, Ilocos Norte, Isabela and Cagayan. According to the players, they were impressed the way the organizers run the tournament. “Wala kang talo dito, kasi libre na ang pagkain at merienda, ok pa ang premyo (You will not lose here because the foods are free and the prizes are good),” 9th placer Remel Ramirez recalled after the tournament.
The champion went home with a trophy and P5,000 richer while the 2nd, 3rd and 4th placers got their own trophies and pocketed P3,000, P2,000 and P1,000, respectively. The 4th to 11th finishers had P500 each. The top high school and elementary scorers each received P1,000 and brand new chess sets.
It can be recalled that the Apayao Chess Eagles played solidly and showed their steel-nerve dominance in the just concluded CAR Athletic Association Meet last February which Apayao hosted and set their best ever performance in a regional meet as they captured five (5) gold, seven (7) silver and two (2) bronze medals in the standard and blitz chess events, thus, sending four out of possible eight players to Davao for the Palarong Pambansa this April.
The Palarong Pambansa bound players who fought hard in this tournament with their coaches Estelita Biggayan and Joseph Miguel though came short are: Krizza Mae Biggayan in the secondary girls, Roi Joseph Pascua in the secondary boys and Darlene Dannog in elementary girls. BY GERRIAHZON S. SEBASTIAN