By John Tuerijama
TWO of the country’s top chess players have taken a break from the sport due to studies but the President of the Namibia Chess Federation (NCF) is of the view that their absence has not impacted negatively on national team’s performance.
A household name in chess circles, Nicola Tjaronda is currently getting ready to sit for her end-of-year Grade 12 examinations at Jan Mohr Secondary School, while William Kamberipa is studying in Moscow, Russia. Both are key members of the Namibian national team, together with Julian Isaaks and Hange Tjingavete who are also studying medicine in Russia.
“We are positive they will return with enhanced skills,” stressed Otto Nakapunda, president of the Namibia Chess Federation.
Despite the absence of the key chess players, Nakapunda said Namibia has a good team to send to the World Chess Olympiad in Baku, Azerbaijan. The 42nd Chess Olympiad, organised by the Fédération Internationale des Échecs (FIDE) and comprising an open and women’s tournament, as well as several events designed to promote the game of chess, will take place in Baku from September 1 -14.
The Namibian team to the Chess Olympiad comprises Dante Beukes, Charles Eichab, Leonard Mueller, Sanders Oberholzer and Max Nitzborn while Nakapunda will serve as team manager.
On the domestic front, Nakapunda said the NCF has so far staged open tournaments in Oshakati, Arandis, Omaruru and Walvis Bay.
“These are all opens which are part of our strategic plan to grow the Royal Game outside the Khomas region. Upcoming Open tournaments are slated for Keetmanshoop, Gobabis and Okahandja,” said Nakapunda.
“Our biggest tournament for juniors is the Namibian Junior Open that took place at the coastal town of Walvis Bay in June. It attracted close to 400 players”.
He added: “We are working hard to make sure that in the spirit of Harambee, no one should feel left out. We just need Rundu and Katima Mulilo to come on board. If there is anyone from that area who is interested in setting up a chess club, please get in touch with the chess federation.”
Confidente. Lifting the Lid. Copyright © 2015