Torre posts 3rd straight point as PH rips Nigeria
VENERABLE Grandmaster Eugene Torre claimed his third straight victim as the Philippines routed Nigeria, 3-1, in the third round on Sunday and vaulted back into contention in the Open division of the 42nd Chess Olympiad in Baku, Azerbaijan.
The 64-year-old Torre, Asia’s first GM who is competing in an unparalleled 23rd Olympiad, tamed Fide Master Daniel Anwuli on board three to seal the Filipinos’ second win in three outings, good for 4.0 match points.
GMs John Paul Gomez and Rogelio Barcenilla Jr. subdued FM Bomo Kigigha and International Master Oladapo Adu on boards one and three, respectively, to compensate for IM Paulo Bersamina’s defeat to Candidate Master Adeyinka Adesina on board four following an opening blunder.
The Filipinos, seeded 53rd among a record field of 180 teams, have another chance to gain ground as they are battling the lower-ranked Costa Ricans (70th) in the fourth round Monday night.
A day after stunning fourth-ranked Georgia, the Philippine women’s team suffered a crushing 3.5-0.5 setback to No. 5 India and remained at 4.0 points.
Woman IM Janelle Mae Frayna, bidding to become the country’s first WGM, drew with GM Dronavalli Harika, ranked No. 5 in the world, in their top board tussle to avert a shutout.
WIM Jan Jodilyn Fronda, Christy Lamiel Bernales and WIM Catherine Secopito yielded in succession to IMs Rout Padmini and Sachdev Tania and WGM Swaminathan Soumya.
The Filipino women, seeded 46th among 140 teams, tangle with the 40th-ranked Canadians in the fourth round.
Torre will try to extend his win-run against GM Aco Gonzalez on board two while Gomez will again man the top board in lieu of Julio Catalino Sadorra against IM Pineda Minero. Barcenilla is pitted against IM Romero Valdes while Bersamina tries to get back on track against IM Tsij Murillo.