Barbados' Elson takes Junior Crown!
Barbados Barbados Barbados

Askari Elson (pictured right) in the last round with a draw Olaudah Pryce clinching the title of the  Sagicor Open (Barbados Junior Open). He finished with an undefeated 7-1. The two rising Jamaican stars Alain Morais and Daren Wisdom finished tied for 2nd-4th with 6-1. Wisdom also added the Blitz trophy to his winnings. Imran Hosein defeated Muralihar Areti to avenge last year's loss and as a result, joined Morais and Wisdom in the winner's circle with 6 points.  Areti ended with 5 points, the same as last year.

Askari Elson. Copyright  2003, Barbados Chess Federation.

Askari Elson
2003 Sagicor Open Champ

The last three rounds were exciting as Elson lead throughout held off a surge by Wisdom, Jamaica's 2002 Junior Champ. After a key win over Morais in round five, Elson had only to outpace Areti and Wisdom.  This year the Trinidadian contingent of Hosein, Sean Perryman (6-2), and last year's champ, Allan Munro (6-2) remained within striking distance of the lead, but were derailed by losses and never gained the momentum to mount a serious threat.

Surinamese Junior Champion,
Avinash Wahi started strong, but suffered losses to Areti (in round 4) and Wisdom (in round 6) to fall behind. Wahi closed the tournament with a draw to under-14 champ Martyn Delcastilho, but didn't go home empty-handed as he took 2nd place in the blitz tournament. His compatriot Roshni Jagroep took the top honors for female players.

Elson, currently studying in the U.S., reinforced the notion that he is not only a top junior in the Caribbean, but a forced to be reckoned with in future zonal tournaments. In round 3, he showed a bit of flash in demolishing Delcastilho in a kingside crush.

In the diagrammed position, Elson had built up a strong attack and after  25g5, settled matters with
26.Rf5! preparing the annihilating Rh3.  The game continued 26Bxf5 27.exf5 g4 28.Re7! winning (See game).

The two-time Olympiad player will certainly add a ray of hope for Barbados' chess future. Congratulations to Askari and to everyone who made the Sagicor Open a success!

Barbados Chess Federation (tournament coverage, games)

Elson-DelCastilho, 2003 Sagicor Open:  Elson played 26.Rf5! preparing the annihilating Rh3. The game ended 26Bxf5 27.exf5 g4 28.Re7! Nxe7 29.fxe7+

Elson played 26.Rf5! preparing the annihilating Rh3. The game ended 26Bxf5 27.exf5 g4 28.Re7! Nxe7 29.fxe7+.

Prize winners at the Sagicor Open (Barbados Junior Open). Copyright  2003, Barbados Chess Federation.

Prize winners at the Sagicor Open (Barbados Junior Open). Copyright © 2003, Barbados Chess Federation.


Press Releases

Pre-Tournament


Results and Standings (70 players)

Round 1     Round 2      Round 3     Round 4
Round 5     Round 6     Round 7     Round 8

Posted by The Chess Drum: 19 July 2003