MANILA, Philippines — Indian Woman Grandmaster and International Master Padmini Rout is returning to the place of her one of biggest triumphs.
Three years ago, Rout bagged the Asian Continental Chess Championship in Makati City against counterpart Wu Jue Wang of China.
Albeit this time, the now 27-year old Rout will be here virtually when she competes for the Palawan Queen’s Gambit in the Wesley So Cup of the Professional Chess Association of the Philippines that begins this May 15.
“IM Padmini is someone close to the hearts of most of the girls in Palawan Queen’s Gambit,” bared the team’s head coach Susan Neri. “They have competed against her in a lot of international competitions and she has definitely earned the respect of our girls.”
The Odisha, India native has won multiple titles in the youth, junior, and Asian level.
Rout has also been an invaluable part of the Indian national team where she was a part of the gold medal-winning team in the 2014 Women’s Chess Olympiad in Tromso, Norway.
“Padmini is someone the girls look up to because we do not have an IM female player in the Philippines yet,” added Neri. “She has both a female title (WGM) and a male title (IM). It only goes to show that women can really do good in the sport except we are always underrepresented.”
Aside from Rout, another addition to the Palawan Queen’s Gambit is WIM Beverly Mendoza.
“WIM Beverly Mendoza is one of the biggest names in the history of Philippine Women’s Chess,” underscored Neri. “She has taken the Philippines to great heights in her prime years. Having her in our team adds flexibility in our line-up and spice to our league.”
Rout and Mendoza will replace Yanika Seratubias and Cecil Cuizon and will join WFM Shania Mae Mendoza, WIM Catherine Perena-Secopito, WIM Marie Antoinette San Diego, WNM Carmelites Abanes, Marife dela Torre, Jesibel Maberit, and Mikee Suede.
“Having IM Padmini and Beverly join us gives us a stronger line-up,” summed up Neri. “Moreover, she also believes that women can do well.”