African Players rise at Olympiad!!
It appears that African players have made incremental improvements in their play since the 2000 Olympiad. There have been many surprises including a spectacular start by IM Robert Gwaze. Gwaze won the Africa Junior Championship at age 17 and has been identified as one of the finest young talents on the continent. NM Grace Nsubuga of Uganda has put together a couple of nice performances and nearly toppled Canadian GM Alexandre Lesiege.Proceed to 2002 Chess Olympiad coverage!
African teams have befuddled the opposition as evidenced by Brazil's (ranked #26) ceding of a 2-2 draw to Zambia ((#88). Upsets have been frequent including Botswana's (#110) win over Mongolia (#72) and Ethiopia' (#118) win over Iraq (#83). Perhaps the biggest upset has to be Zambia's win over Peru (#53) … with IM Amon Simutowe sitting out! After five rounds, the top tallies for African nations are: Egypt, 10½; Algeria, Botswana, 10; Angola, South Africa, Tunisia, Zimbabwe, 9.
The overall leaders of the tournament are: Bosnia and Herzegovina with 15½; Russia and Armenia with 15 points each. The USA team is currently in clear 2nd in the women's competiton after defeating defending Olympiad champion, China.
Posted by The Chess Drum: 30 October 2002