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CHESS: Kenya finishes top of Africa at Online Olympiad for People Living with Disabilities

Last updated 3 months ago | By Washington Onyango

Edna Adhiambo of Bank of Africa (right) in action against Daphne Mwikali of Equity Bank in a Kenya Chess Premier League match. [Washington Onyango, Standard]

The Kenya National Chess Team finished top of Africa in the final rankings of the 2020 FIDE Online Olympiad for People Living with Disabilities.

Kenya emerged top in Africa of the six nations that took part in the event, garnering 10 points, one more than Zimbabwe which came in second.

The team represented by Sadam Ali Sheikh, Robert Ndirangu, Geoffrey Maoga and Ivini Boke secured one win and two draws out of the seven matches played over a week.

Kenya lost to Turkey and Malaysia 4-0 consecutively in their opening two matches before bouncing back to winning ways with a 4-0 win against Libya.

They then went on to draw 2-2 with Caribbean side Nicaragua, lost 3-1 to Panama before drawing again in their last game against Mongolia in their last match of the virtual championship.

Worldwide, Kenya finished at position 53 with 10 points, 12 points behind eventual winners Russia.

Kenya Chess Team member competing in the World Chess Online Olympiad day three at a Nairobi hotel on August 02, 2020. [Stafford Ondego, Standard]

Speaking to the Standard Sports after the tournament, Kenya team captain Anthony Kionga said they have learnt vital lessons and new tricks from the tourney.

He said the are looking on to improve before the 2021 chess season kicks off.

"This is an impressive performance showcased by the team. We3 started the tourney on a low but picked up the momentum as the tournament progressed but we promise a good show the next time we will be representing the nation again" said Kionga.

“The players have learnt new tricks and we will be going back to the drawing board to train and prepare for the 2021 chess calendar season.”

Chess was among the contact sports considered high risk and barred from resumption by the Ministry of Sports when the government announced resumption of sports in the country on Friday.

Contact sport have been suspended for almost nine months since the first case of coronavirus was reported in Kenya in March.


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