The Kenya Chess Championship 2021
The Kenya Chess Championship 2021 is generating tremendous excitement amongst Kenyan players after the Chess Kenya Federation posted a photo of the car that the winner will take home on 30th December 2021. The list of participants has now been published on the chess-results.com site.
CM Ben Magana rated 2081, tops the list with other contenders like Joseph Methu and defending Champion Mehul Gohil, ranked 3rd and 4th respectively.
The one name that has generated considerable interest is FM Martin Gateri, who represented Kenya in five Olympiads and the All African Games in 2011. FM Gateri who is ranked number two on the list has been inactive for over six years, and it will be interesting to see how he fares. He is rated 2068 or 13 points behind CM Ben Magana.
Matthew Kanegeni is another exciting name that appears on the list. Will he succeed in winning 2nd national title? Matthew Kangeni came agonisingly close to winning the 2018 edition of the Kenya National Championship.
He was leading the event before the final 9th round with 7 out of 8 rounds, with Ben Nguku and Dr Victor Ng’ani with 6.5 points each. In the last round, a painful loss to Joseph Methu saw Matthew Kangeni’s hope go up in flames and allowing Dr Victor Ng’ani to grab the 2018 Kenya National Championship title.
Joseph Atwoli is another payer who has come out of semi-retirement to grab the top honours. It will be interesting to see how his flamboyant and swashbuckling style will fare this time.
Ricky Sang, who suffered a painful 4-2 defeat against Elvis Likoko in the Terrian Chess Challenge, will also be in action. Elvis Likoko is ranked 34th while Ricky Sang is ranked 7th.
The Open section has 140 participants and the Ladies section has 40 player. Fans worldwide will keenly follow what is going on in Nairobi from 26th December until the final 9th round on 30th December 2021.
Kenya & Russia comparison!
It is the second time that the Chess Kenya Federation will present a car to the winner of the National Championship. The first time was in 2019 when Mehul Gohil drove off with a new Mazda car worth approximately KES 700,000 (USD 7,000).
The only other chess federation that has awarded a car to the winner of the National Championship has been Russia. GM Alexander Riazantsev drove off with a Renault Kaptur car plus one million Russian Roubles (approximately USD 15,000) for winning the 2016 Russian Chess Championship.
Alexandra Kosteniuk who won the Ladies section of the 2016 Russian Championship also won a Renault Kaptru car as well.
Past winners of the Kenya National Championship
|1991||Event not held|
|1992||Event not held|
|1993||Event not held|
|1994||Lothar Nicolaiczuk (GER)|
|1996||Philip Nicholas Odhiambo|
|2000||Event not held|
|2001||Kenneth Ajode Omolo|
|2002||Event not held|
|2003||Matthew Kamau Kanegeni|
|2004||Event not held|
|2005||Nathan Mukaka Ateka|
|2006||CM Ben Magana|
|2007||Event not held|
|2008||Event not held|
|2009||Event not held|
|2010||Event not held|
|2011||Event not held|
|2012||Event not held|
|2013||CM Ben Magana-|
|2014||Mehul Gohil (Ladies Sanjana Shah)|
|2015||Ken Omolo (Ladies Riya Shah)|
|2016||Event not held|
|2017||CM Ben Magana (Ladies WCM Joyce Nyaruai)|
|2018||Dr Victor Ngani (Ladies Gloria Jumba)|
|2019||Mehul Gohil (Ladies WCM Lucy Wanjiru)|