33 TO REPRESENT KZN IN CHESS
By: Nhlanhla Ndlovu
Thirty-three students will represent KwaZulu-Natal in the World Youth Chess Championships (WYCC) to be hosted in Durban in September.
The tournament was launched at the International Convention Centre on Monday and it will be hosted at the same venue. This will mark the first time the tournament will be held in Africa.
The minors were selected through South African Junior Chess Championships (SAJCC) in Durban last year with 2100 participants from various chess federations from around the country participating.
Dayaan Parthiephal (12) one of the participants, said she will be representing the country for the first time in the tournament.
“I actually feel proud I’m representing not just myself but everybody in this country. It is my first time playing in this tournament,” she said.
WYCC will attract over 1800 participants from more than 90 countries, with participants’ ages ranging from 8 years old to 18.
Parthiephal played in the SAJCC tournament in April before competing with other South African chess youngsters, claiming the third position.
She believes that being calm and avoiding mistakes during the tournament will help her to succeed.
“Sometimes you get so nervous just because of somebody’s rating. I shouldn’t be nervous and I will take it one game at a time,” Parthiephal said.
Chess has been regarded by the government as a priority code sport at school level for its numerous beneficial effects and it has proven a popular activity amongst pupils.
Kwa-Zulu Chess Association President and member of the WYCC Local Organising Committee, Sandile Xulu said it was a long journey for the kids.
“They started at the provincial level, then on to national level, where they won on to be part of the team,” he said.
Xulu revealed that plans are afoot to expand their transformation agenda, with talented being scouted at grass-roots level.
The tournament has been held all over the world with the likes of Spain, Brazil, Turkey, Germany, Greece and last year the United Arab Emirates playing host.