Singapore GM dooms Torre’s Zonal bid
Unable to prevent the march of Zhang’s two connected pawns against his lone pawn, Torre, who handled black, surrendered after 45 moves of the Scotch opening and lost ground in the nine-round competition staking two two World Cup berths.
Zhang, the tournament’s top seed with an Elo rating of 2592, climbed to 5.0 points in the company of GMs Mark Paragua of the Philippines and Susanto Megaranto of Indonesia, who drew their match.
Pacesetter GM Darwin Laylo (5.0 points) was still locked in a tight battle against Singaporean IM Kevin Goh Wei Ming (4.5 points) at presstime.
Two-time Olympian John Paul Gomez won by default over countryman Fide Master Randy Segarra to catch up with Torre, FM Jan Emmanuel Garcia and GM Antonio Rogelio Jr. and Vietnamese GM Dao Thien Hai at 4.5 points.
Handling black, Antonio, representing HHSG of the Philippine Army, settled for a draw with Dao after 31 moves of a Bogo Indian while Garcia, newly crowned Asian Youth under-16 titlist, held Vietnamese GM Cao Sang to a draw.
Vietnamese WWGM Nguyen Thi Thanh Anh downed erstwhile pacesetter WGM Irine Kharisma Sukandar of Indonesia to surge ahead of the women’s division with 5.5 points.
Nguyen thus boosted her chances for the lone Women’s World Championship berth.
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