Barbosa, Paragua remain on top in Vietnam chess
MANILA, Philippines – Filipino Grandmasters (GMs) Oliver Barbosa and Mark Paragua toppled their respective rivals in the third round of the 3rd HD Bank Cup International Open Chess Tournament on Tuesday in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam.
The victories of Barbosa and Paragua created a four-way tie for first place along with International Masters (IMs) Wei Yi of China and Nguyen Duc Hoa of Vietnam.
The Taytay, Rizal native Barbosa defeated IM Pham Le Thao Nguyen of Vietnam, while the Bulacan ace Paragua edged countryman FM Haridas Pascua.
Earlier, Barbosa toppled IM Mikhail Vasilyev of Ukraine in the opening round.
"So far, so good. Maganda ang inilalaro nina Oliver [Barbosa] at Mark [Paragua]," said National Chess Federation of the Philippines (NCFP) president Prospero "Butch" Pichay Jr.
In the fourth round, Barbosa will take on Wei on Board 1, while Duc Hoa plays opposite of Paragua on Board 2.
Meanwhile, GM Darwin Laylo of the Philippines beat IM Duong The Anh of Vietnam to lead the huge group of 2.5 pointers that includes compatriots GMs John Paul Gomez and Richard Bitoon who ended their game into a fighting draw in the third round.
A total of $30,000 cash prize await winners with the champion getting the lion share of $10,000.
The Filipino woodpushers Vietnam campaign is supported by the NCFP, the Philippine Sports Commission and the Philippine Olympic Committee. -- By Marlon Bernardino