Home Chess Tournaments 6th Rwabushenyi Memorial Chess Tournament

6th Rwabushenyi Memorial Chess Tournament

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The 6th edition of the Rwabushenyi Open came to an end on 13th  December 2015 with IM Arthur Ssegwanyi taking top spot with 7.5/8, followed by Harold Wanyama with 6.5/8.  IM Arthur Ssegwanyi went home with Uganda Shillings 1,000,000 (KES 31,000 or USD 310).

I know you must be wondering why I am doing a story on Uganda while this blog is meant to cover Kenyan chess?
The simple reason is that we had our own Ben Magana who decided to forgo the Kenya National Championship and take part in this grueling event which is run over two weekends (5th, 6th, 12, 13thDecember 2015.  This meant that Ben had to travel twice to Uganda to participate.
Ben Magana ended up with a very respectable joint 3rdposition with 6/8.
Top 15 players in the Open section out of 89 players
In the Ladies section world famous Phiona Mutesi was top with 7/8 on tie break with Gloria Nansubuga who also had 7/8.  Regular traveller to Kenya Christine Namaganda was 3rd with 6/8.  Missing in action was WFM Ivy Amoko who is currently residing in Nairobi, Kenya.
Top 16 players in the Ladies section out of 27
A book has been published on Phiona Mutesi titled “The Queen of Katwe: A Story of Life, Chess, and One Extraordinary Girl’s Dream of Becoming a Grandmaster”, by Tim Crothers.
Top 16 Junior players out of 24 players
A total of 140 players took part in this event which was split into 3 sections; Open, Ladies and Juniors.
The event was sponsored by the Civil Aviation Authority of Uganda in honour of their past their former Director Airports the late Cyril Rwabushenyi who was a former Chairman and founding member of the Uganda Chess Federation.  The sponsorship package was Uganda Shillings 10.6 million (KES 330,000 or USD 3,300) making it one of the biggest events in East Africa.
This event was the first one to select the top 30 players who will now enter a second phase to select the Uganda team for the 2016 Chess Olympiad in Baku, Azerbaijan.
I do have to apologise that I have not photos of this event despite my many emails and requests to get some. 
Caricature of Ben Magana – by Were Studios
I will however bring something historical about Kenya and Uganda.
In most cases Uganda players come to Kenya and carry most of the loot back to Uganda.  Did you know that in 1997  the reverse happened?  This happened when Humpherey Andolo who now resides in Bristol, United Kingdom cruised his way to victory in the NRM Pepsi tournament.  This was covered in a story in our magazine called “KENCHESS” November-December 1997 issue .  The story was aptly called “Chaos in Kampala!”

I bring you a snippet of the story;

KENCHESS magazine

You can find the rest of the magazine on Para Gudka’s site – http://www.pgonchess.com/blog/kenchess-issue-2/

We congratulate IM Arthur Ssegwanyi for winning this event and to Ben Magana who did Kenya proud by coming out 3rd.