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Sports

San Diego wins national women’s chess with aplomb

Joey Villar - The Philippine Star

MANILA, Philippines — Marie Antoinette San Diego came through with an effort to remember as she crowned herself winner of the Philippine National Women’s Chess Championship presented by Nova Wellness Store at the PACE yesterday.

It was a dream come true for the 23-year-old Woman International Master from Dasmariñas City bet as she finally laid claim to the one title that she long sought for, and thus joined the ranks of former titlists Woman Grandmaster Janelle Mae Frayna and WIM Jan Jodilyn Fronda.

And San Diego made it for everybody to remember with 10.5 points out of a possible 11 on 10 wins including ones over Frayna and Fronda and a draw.

There were some anxious moments when she teetered on the brink of disaster but relied on good fortunes, perseverance and tactical creativity to crawl her way back.

Overall, she was like a fearsome tigress on the prowl, always hunting for her helpless preys.

And this final-round game was no exception as she went for the kill early against the young, talented but inexperienced – Claros, who was forced to scamper for safety and defend with all her might only to end up losing a pawn and eventually a piece or face the inevitability of a checkmate.

She was so dominating that the runner-up, Frayna, wound up 2.5 points behind with eight points.

Knowing it was over but the shouting, the country’s first WGM opted to not push herself anymore and settled for a quiet truce with Olympiad teammate WIM Bernadette Galas.

Frayna settled with the P30,000 prize after seeing the end of her reign as longtime champ.

Vice Glysen Derotas, another potential future champion, took third.

PACE

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