The girls' captain Maria Nakanyike
The girls’ captain Maria Nakanyike

After three rounds of play at the African Schools Individual Chess Championships ongoing at the Rainbow Towers Hotel in Harare, Zimbabwe, Ugandan youngsters are on song despite majority missing the first two rounds.

Over five kids missed the opening two rounds due to delayed flights, but they did not let that affect them and that was manifested when they finally got on board.

The girls’ team captain Maria Nakanyike, playing under the category of U11 led the way as she outwitted native Courtney Mugomba on board eight in the third round. The Crestals’ board five player was fortunate not to have been paired in the opening rounds meaning she wasn’t affected by a bye.

Under the section of U11, teammates Edwin Pido and Kevin Paul Wasswa Mwanje faced off in the third round on board 9, and the former won the contest. Wasswa is a board three player at Mulago Pawns in the National Chess League while Pido plays for Royal Knights.

Hamssadhwane Sivakumar secured Uganda’s first point.

Although she lost the first and the third round, Hamssadhwane Sivakumar took the acclaim of being the first to secure victory for Uganda. Sivakumar bested Shah Nishi Vrajbushan from neighbors Kenya in the second round to fully cement the fact that Ugandans are stronger than their bitter rivals.

The youngest players in the team Kitty Joyce Mary Ndagizimana and Suubi Kiwanuka are doing fairly well. Ndagizimana missed the first round and lost her first game which was the second round, but she put up a fight in the third round as she shared spoils with Shekinah Matekane from Botswana.

FIDE President Kirsan llyumzhinov watches on as Kitty Joyce Mary Ndagizimana ponders on a move

Kiwanuka on the other hand lost the opening two rounds, but was on the winning end in round three as he outdid Zimbabwean Chakangesu Makomborero on board eight.

The boys’ captain Mark Nyola Wasswa, Elijah Patrick Muwanguzi, and Peace Naomi Nabuyondo are yet to see victory, however, each benefited from a bye. Wasswa missed the first two rounds while Muwanguzi missed the opening round.

Suubi Kiwanuka Lwanga

Upcoming games

Wednesday comes with the fourth round, and Nakanyike will battle Lzwazilwenkosi Nkomo from Zimbabwe, while Nabuyondo, Sivakumar and Ndagizimana will take on Peo Sigwele, Edith Muyambiri and Kayla Mngomba respectively.

Nyola shall attempt to find his first win against Namibia’s Anthony Van Der Meer while Pido will face Rankwane Modiredi from Botswana.

And Kiwanuka will meet Mawire Tawananyasha who beat Muwanguzi. Muwanguzi meanwhile, faces Daniel Kondowe.

Only Wasswa isn’t paired in this round.

Marion Malinga

Staff Writer for Kawowo Sports

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