Home Chess Tournaments 57th Nairobi Chess Club Championship – A Fast Report

57th Nairobi Chess Club Championship – A Fast Report


From the book “Alexander the Great” by Dennis Wepman.

“Finally the Persians set up his (Darius) camp at Guagamela (now Tell Gome), cleared the ground for his chariots and prepared for what he knew would be a tough fight.
Darius’s recognition of Alexander’s military genius ca be seen from the fact that, rather than offering battle immediately, he sent the Macedonian king a third letter whose terms were even more generous than those contained in his previous pieces of panic stricken correspondence.  Again .………….
The Macedonian infantry number some 40,000 and the cavalry a scant 7,000, so Darius’s troop outnumbered them by about 5 to 1………….
On September 30, Alexander climbed a hill above Guagamela and beheld the forces Darius had mustered.  It was a staggering sight.  The Persian cavalry seemed to stretch to the horizon and the great, bristling scythed chariots – said to number 200 were like modern tanks.  To anyone but Alexander such an army might have seemed invincible.”
Alexander the Great by Robert Green page 32
That was how it seemed today morning at the Braeburn School, Gitanga Road which was the venue for the highly anticipated 57thNairobi Chess Club Championship which started today morning.   A total of 1,160 pawns, 290 Knights, 290 Bishops, 290 Rooks, 145 Queens and finally 145 Kings were laid out in a fine display at the Dining Hall of the School.  What a staggering sight!
There was a flurry of activity as the Kim Bhari and his team of organisers (Duke Micheka, Moses Andiwoh, Georgina, Terence Chazima, & Paul Oketch) scrambled to get everything ready for an 8.30am start. It was going to be difficult bearing in mind that there was a surge in last minute names that meant that the number of players reached a block busting 145 entries which necessitated extra tables, chairs and sets being brought in.  This threw Kim’s team in a  tailspin.
I guess in the end the 20 minute delay did not matter much when the action started in 4 separate sections.  The Prestige had 23 players led by the highest rated player Bob Bibasa and Nsubuga Haruna both of Uganda followed by Peter Gilurth, Ben Magana, Mehul Gohil and Bono Claudio of Portugal amongst the top 6 players.
View of the packed playing hall
The Open section had 65 players led by veteran Martin Oyamo, while the Ladies section had only 18 players led by Ivy Amoko of Uganda.  The Junior section had a total of 40 players which was a big surprise considering that a number of players would have been on holidays.

The action of the day was swift and furious – Ben Magana stamping his authority by 3 wins to take a commanding lead at the top.  In the Ladies section both Ivy Amoko and Winfred Thitu took the lead with 3 points each.  

I am sure you must find this boring so I will bring you some action photos of the day.  Those who want to get further details may go to www.chess-results.com.


Haruna Nsubuga of Uganda v Larry Kagambi winner of last year’s edition
Section of the crowd
More action
Duncan Apiyo looking for a win
More action
Who will be crowed the Winner in this year’s edition?  My guess is that it will be Ben Magana in the Prestige, while in the Ladies section it will be Ivy Amoko.  I cannot guess who will win the Open as there are many fine players who can win this section.  I think it is best that we wait and see what happens.
The Junior section was done with as there were only 5 rounds of 25 minutes each and  the winner was Sudalaimuthu Anish Sukumar with 5 points.
Jackson Okoth (left) v Mehul Gohil
Billy Chepkonga
Chess Kenya Chairman makes his move


Action outside – Steve Ouma in black shirt explains his game to Joseph Atwoli
One lesson that is very clear – chess players love tournaments that have sections.  This gives many other players to win some much needed silverware.
 (All photos by Kim Bhari with permission).  For more photos from this event check out https://www.facebook.com/media/set/?set=a.911896128867264.1073741875.140121336044751&type=3#