Mandizha joint 1st at Liberty Bell

IM-elect Farai Mandizha

Zimbabwe’s Farai Mandizha tied for first place in the strong Liberty Bell Open this past weekend. GM Alexander Shabalov, GM Sergey Kudrin and IM Marc Esserman also score atop the field with 5.5/7.

Mandizha earned his third IM norm last year and is still waiting on conferral of his title. In this tournament, he showed his strength by beating Kudrin in a critical fifth round bout. He then beat the famed blitz legend Yaacov Norowitz before taking a bye in the last round. Mandizha’s USCF rating is now approaching 2500.

There were a number of notable performances by 12-year old scholastic players Justus Williams and Josh Colas. Both played strong fields and with a respectable 3/7 in the Open section, were able to gain on their new-claimed Master’s ratings. It is interesting that both Justus and Josh played to a hard-fought draw in the last round. There is a bright future ahead for both of these players!



  1. Josh is looking forward to playing with Farai and the amazing twins( Bryants) at USAT. When Farai gets going, he turns into a BEAST!
    Congrats to you Farai.

  2. Hi Daaim, how did Mandizha end up in the US? Is he studying there? Just curious to know. I know him from the SA Open we played in 2005. I played him in round 2. He is a nice guy.

  3. I’m so happy for my Zimbabwean nation. We have abundant chess talent the likes of Gwaze, Mandizha, Makoto, Moyo to name just a few. Due to this awesome talented players emerging from our nation I’ve decided to contribute to the further development of chess in Zimbabwe. My contribution is mainly about developing chess at the grassroots level. I’ve just started training primary school level kids this beautiful strategic game in Glen Norah,Harare(Gwaze is from Glen Norah). Well, the academy is simply called Glen Norah Knights Chess Academy( I used to be on board 2 and Gwaze board 1 during our youthful days at the Glen Norah Gunners Chess Club in the mid 90s. CHESS NEVER DIES IN GLEN NORAH!!

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