Zone 4.3 Individual Championships (Botswana)

Botswana Botswana Botswana

Botswana is currently hosting the 4.3 zonal championship in its nation’s capitol. The field features some of the strongest players from the southern region. IMs Kenny Solomon, Robert Gwaze and Watu Kobese are leading the field. Botswana players will try to hold home court and will be lead by FM Phemelo Khetho.

Zone 4.3 Individual Championships
April 1-11, 2011 (Gaborone, Botswana)
1 Solomon, Kenny IM South Africa
2 Gwaze, Robert IM Zimbabwe
3 Kobese, Watu IM South Africa
4 Van Der Nat, Nicholas FM South Africa
5 Jere, Daniel FM Zambia
6 Oatlhotse, Providence CM Botswana
7 Domingos, Catarino Angola
8 Pascoal, Eduardo Angola
9 Khetho, Phemelo FM Botswana
10 Njobvu, Ignatius CM Botswana
11 Domingos Ediberto GM Angola
12 Paiva, Donaldo Mozambique
13 Allan, Ranaivoharisoa Madagascar
14 Gaealafshwe, Barileng CM Botswana
15 Li Ying, Patrick CM Mauritius
16 Notha Moakofi Botswana
17 Macongoma, Miguel Jose Mozambique
18 Lova Rafenohery Madagascar
0 (men)
1 Sischy, Monique WCM South Africa
2 Sabure, Tuduetso WGM Botswana
3 Solomon Anzel WIM South Africa
4 Lopang, Tshepiso WCM Botswana
5 Reis Fatima WCM Angola
6 Modongo, Boikhutso WFM Botswana
7 Mbahata, Constance ZAM
8 Vilhete, Vania Mozambique
9 Mokgacha, Keitumetse Botswana
10 Francis, Onkemetse Botswana
11 Michel, Jesse Mozambique
12 Saina, Yvonne Zambia
13 Rosalina, Sonia Angola
14 Oliviera, Engracia Angola
0 (women)


  1. Gwaze is now on 7/7 after beating Ignatius Njobvu,Jere beat Van Der Nat and Kobese and K.Solomons drew with the angolans Ediberto and Domingos respectively.

  2. I am sending some pics at the organizersrequest now but as the tournamnet is not finished i do not have time to send you the games now,will do later in the week end.Only an angolan journalist is present to do daily reports.

  3. I hate to be the one who throws the wrench into the kumbaya, but this can not go unexposed!
    I have been contacted by another young talented Zim player (Makoto) begging me to intervene as the Organisers were refusing him participation(Sad I could not help!). He was given a sudden barrier being to Book-into the Hotel where the event is held and pay almost 3000 USD for this cost on the spot. PLUS still pay the high cost of the FIDE registration fees to PARTICIPATE. This in the face of the Bots players staying at their respective homes. Mind Bots players tried to talk sense to the OC but failed!
    Let me be clear on this in this manner! This kind of SHAKEDOWN is IMMORAL & INHUMAN plus, would be illegal in RSA! It was once used in EU countries and I believe has no place in the African continent where chess MUST be developed desperately. When one considers the fact that elections for FIDE office bearers were just held a few weeks ago with a promise of change and progress then I hear this, It makes me mad! It should also make all livid!
    Take for instance the Angola Chess federation president who happens to be a Premier Govt leader. He asked to be the leader of Chess in Africa. All federation refused to supported his bid,. including South Africa & Botswana. This is the man who put together an event known as Cuca BGi, slated to occur the third installment this May in Luanda. The prize Fund is more than 20 000 USD cash handed out to PLAYERS and OFFICIALS. Expenses cover everything! Including Flights for all players from the very from Botswana & South Africa (Simutowe won the Gwaze took the sophomore)! This event is BETTER in every respect than the Africa Championships event of FIDE! Now tell me what you think about that!
    Mr. Ncube and Mr. Buthale (Sorry to mention your names gentlemen!), as chess leaders in our region and Africa at large, whose interest are you serving? Dont you think it’s time to go the route of Mubarak? you should ashamed that a talented player (This player beat Gwaze in the selection event in Zim!) was refused participation for this CORRUPT practice.
    I communicated my disgust with Boikhutsoane of the OC and he has the gal to dismiss this occurence as frivolity and blames the player for showing up with no money to pay Hotel fees!!!
    This happened in Zambia in the junior Chess Champs when Farai Mandizha was excluded by Mr. Ncube. Can you with hindsight realize what this did to Farai? He toiled to be the best despite that setback. But it is how far he would have been if only we had our act together and not exclude a player because we shift goal posts when they try to participate in the God forsaken FIDE events against a stack of odds! Just to compare; GM. Bassem was the same strength with Mandizha (IM.elect now) at that junior level. He is NOW Super GM and Mandizha has to fight an uphill battle just to catch-up now! Aint that some Bullshit!
    SORRY TO SPOIL THE PARTY GUYS! Would like to hear your VIEWS on this!

  4. Jackie,

    I’m not aware of this case, but in all fairness to Farai, his situation is far different from Bassem Amin. It is hard to compare the two. Egypt has a much better infrastructure for chess and Bassem has been able to maintain an active schedule. Farai is in the U.S. and is playing well, but it will be hard for him to get GM norms here without support. He most likely will not get that support in America.

  5. Daaim
    I am not knocking Farai for not being a GM. I am also not comparing the current scenarios of the two players. Certainly, when Mandizha was a junior and Bassem was a junior, the two where neck and neck on almost every potential and some abilities, in fact they regularly shared the spoils in hard fought chess battles. Plus they share the unique intersect of winning against the fearsome GM.Nakamura! I know because I was in charge of Mandizha’s training and development and like Gwaze and Simutowe before him, he stayed in my home with my wife and family!
    Bassem went on to Chess greatness, while mandizha was held back by these chess despots. They blackmailed and asked me for bribes and favours always just let him play! Every time he played an event i had to fight tooth and nail. Finally, they cooperated to deny him play in several Africa junior championships . One being in zambia where Mr. Ncube said he MUST get written permission from Zimbabwe. At the same time discussing the fate accompli with the main man in Harare behind our back!
    Now, do you phantom that Mandizha would have been IM through that process long before he lifted himself on his boot-strips in the USA. This exclusion of another Zim player smacks of similar shit!
    Gwaze was long showing signs of terrific chess prowess and could by now have been a Top Ten world class player. This was told to me by a top trainer (Droversky) many years ago. Because of these despots who seem to want to stay in chess power forever, we lost that chance (I hope we can still see him as GM one day at least). Here your clarion call for opportinities on his behalf is appreciated, but have you paused to think that this is ACU officials mandate? To exclude players because they must pay for Hotels even if they don’t need accommodation is insane. Has chess playing and attainment of rating and tittles become beholden to paying hotel fees? Well then you can kiss TALENT good-bye!

  6. Gwaze we are supporting you all the way 100%. You are from our hood. 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!!

      1. Oh that’s fine. You are very much welcome and your visit will be very much appreciated. In fact anyone willing to visit us is most welcome! Please contact me via email cell no. 263773360071 or 263776048216 physical add. GLEN NORAH KNIGHTS ACADEMY No. 2454 GLEN NORAH A HARARE. Even Daaim Shabazz you are welcome!

  7. eita bra Jackie,
    Be well.
    I learnt of Makoto’s brutal treatment from your yesterdays posting. My attempts to sort OCM side of story has not burne any fruit. I’m also to read the invitation and conditions therein. It will not suprise me if there is clause demading that all players must stay a hotel owned by one of the Organising Commitee Member. This is Africa Jacky, like it is in our politics, those in power become greedy little gods. They never at ones pause to appreciate who there are represting. As long as it pleases their yearning quest to benefit from any situation and will do that without shame.

  8. It is bcoz of this bullshit that Africa is lagging behind in chess it seems chess is now about boosting a lunatic’s deals with hotels and not talent Makoto you will certainly make it Zimbabwe is behind you

  9. Africa may be lagging behind, but it is far far far ahead of what the public outside of the diaspora (and unfortunately inside as well) is conscious of. In fact, the first time I looked at the FIDE top 50 players by country list was about 6 or 7 years ago. Several African diaspora countries back then had average rating of top 50 players well below expert level. In only a matter of 6 or 7 years some of them have gone up 300-400 points.

  10. Until this tournament, I didn’t realize IM Kenny Solomon had surpassed IM Watu Kobese for the top ranking in South Africa. BTW I saw a comment on another site that suggested that GM Peter Leko’s near abandonment of the Caro-Kann could be at least partly traced back to his famous loss with black to Kobese in 2001.

  11. It looks like after round 8 it was 1) Robert Gwaze 7.0 , 2) FM Jere Daniel! 6.0, 3) FM Nicholas Van der Nat 5.5, 4) Kenny Solomon 5.0, and tied for 5th was Kobese and Ediberto 4.5 though Kobese has the tie-break 1

    I heard Van der Nat will make IM now.

  12. Yes… Solomon had passed Kobese long ago. He has played consistently with appearances in an number of international tournaments. Kobese has long been one of the best candidate’s for the GM title, but he has spent a lot of time focusing on other projects. It’s a shame because he definitely had the talent.

  13. Glen Norah Knights Chess Academy ( would like to Congratulate Gwaze for winning the Indiv. Championships. You are our hero from the hood.CHESS NEVER DIES IN GLEN NORAH!!
    1 IM Gwaze Robert ZIM 2429 7.5 7(TB1) 35.5(TB2) 37.25(TB3)
    2 FM Jere Daniel ZAM 2291 7.0 7(TB1) 34.5(TB2) 32.50(TB3)
    3 FM Van Der Nat Nicholus RSA 2319 6.0 5(TB1) 35.5(TB2) 27.75(TB3)
    4 FM Khetho Phemelo BOT 2215 5.0 5(TB1) 34.5(TB2) 21.50(TB2)
    5 IM Solomon Kenny RSA 2450 5.0 4(TB1) 35.5(TB2) 24.00(TB3)
    6 Domingos Ediberto ANG 2180 5.0 3(TB1) 33.5(TB2) 23.25(TB3)
    7 IM Kobese Watu RSA 2361 4.5 4(TB1) 38.0(TB2) 20.25(TB3)
    8 Domingos Catarino ANG 2233 4.5 4(TB1) 30.0(TB2) 14.00(TB3)
    9 Notha Moakofi BOT 2071 4.5 3(TB1) 33.0(TB2) 18.25(TB3)
    10 FM Mucongoma Miguel Jose Maconi MOZ 4.5 3(TB1) 32.0(TB2) 17.00(TB3)
    11 CM Njobvu Ignatius BOT 2226 4.5 3(TB1) 29.5(TB2) 16.00(TB3)
    12 CM Oatlhotse Providence BOT 2262 4.5 3(TB1) 27.0(TB2) 13.00(TB3)
    13 Pascoal Eduardo ANG 2225 3.5 1(TB1) 27.0(TB2) 10.50(TB3)
    14 Lova Rafenohery MAD 3.0 2(TB1) 27.5(TB2) 8.00(TB3)
    15 CM Li Ying Patrick MUR 2136 3.0 1(TB1) 29.5(TB2) 10.75(TB3)
    16 Allan Ranaivoharisoa MAD 2147 2.5 1(TB1) 28.5(TB2) 7.75(TB3)
    17 CM Gaelafshwe Barileng BOT 2142 2.5 1(TB1) 26.0(TB2) 7.75(TB3)
    18 Paiva Donaldo MOZ 2156 2.0 0(TB1) 26.5(TB2) 6.75(TB3)

    Tie Break1: The greater number of victories
    Tie Break2: Buchholz Tie-Breaks (variabel with parameter)
    Tie Break3: Sonneborn-Berger-Tie-Break variable

  14. Congratulations to Sischy Sian of RSA for winning the Women
    1 WCM Sischy Monique Sian RSA 1996 8.5 8(TB1) 34.0(TB2) 42.00(TB3)
    2 WFM Modongo Boikhutso BOT 1846 7.5 7(TB1) 32.5 33.50
    3 WIM Solomon Anzel RSA 1911 6.0 4(TB1) 33.0 26.00
    4 WCM Lopang Tshepiso BOT 1882 5.5 4(TB1) 30.5 19.00
    5 Vilhete Vania Fausto Da T MOZ 1718 5.0 5(TB1) 31.0 16.50
    6 Saina Yvone ZAM 4.5 4(TB1) 35.0 17.25
    7 Francis Onkemetse BOT 4.5 3(TB1) 30.5 17.00
    8 WCM Mokgacha Keitumetse BOT 4.0 3(TB1) 32.0 13.00
    9 WGM Sabure Tuduetso BOT 1993 3.5 3(TB1) 27.5 9.00
    10 Rosalino Sonia ANG 3.0 2(TB1) 31.5 9.25
    11 WCM Reis Fatima ANG 1860 3.0 2(TB1) 31.0 10.75
    12 Mbhata Constance ZAM 1760 2.5 1(TB1) 29.0 7.25
    13 Oliviera Engracia ANG 2.0 0(TB1) 27.5 5.50
    14 Michel Jesse MOZ 1.5 0(TB1) 32.0 7.00

    Tie Break1: The greater number of victories
    Tie Break2: Buchholz Tie-Breaks (variabel with parameter)
    Tie Break3: Sonneborn-Berger-Tie-Break variable

  15. I agree with the sentiments of Ngubeni above. We keep complaining of lack of chess resources preventing Sub-saharan players from achieving great things. I think THE BIGGEST OBSTACLE the Sub-Saharan player faces in his quest for Grandmastery is the corrupt and incompetent chess official. By now our region should have had 10-20 Grandmasters.

    1. This point is very very valid. However, lets temper that a little. Did you know that Japan, with all of its resources and lack of corruption (I guess) has no GMs and only 1 IM and is now ranked below Angola and South Africa? Did you know that the American Nakamura is the only GM Japanese decent?

  16. Congrats to all the players for putting up such a gallant display.
    I can see Daniel Jere being a force to reckon in the near future.

  17. There are several countries with lots of resources that are ranked below Angola on FIDE’s country list: Monaco, Thailand, South korea, Japan, Lichtenstein, Malta, Hong Kong, U.S. Virgin Islands, Qatar

    1. This is true. However, Qatar has produced one GM in Mohammed Modiakhi and his Chinese wife is a GM also. I think South Korea also has a GM in Kim. Your point is well taken though. I believe the issue is the presence of a chess culture. Look at a small nation like Cuba, a world powerhouse. Angola’s culture is stronger than all of the above countries despite its impoverished state. Angolans have a passion for chess. Any country of modest means can produce a GM. Costa Rica has a GM as well as Zambia. Venezuela has produced a GM.

  18. South Korea and Qatar do have GMs. They are ranked lower by FIDE because of the average rating of their top 50 players. Even though South Korea has 1 GM and 0 IMs, the average rating of its top 50 players is 2033. Angola has no GMs and 6 IMs but it’s average is 2230. Botswana is up to 2117.

    1. I suppose my point is that a nation of any caliber can produce a Grandmaster. That is the top criteria for chess success. I’m sure Qatar’s top five is much higher rated than Angola. I have traveled there and played at the club. They have a lot of schoolgirls on their list rated very low. I met some of them at the Dresden Olympiad.

    2. Yes, I see your point. my point is that there is plenty of room to be overwhelmingly positive about African chess. Everyone knows there is corruption and lack of opportunity in sub-Sahara. Another surprising thing about sub-Sahara is that they are being competitive against countries that have nearly 100% literacy! By the way, Qatar’s top 4 is stronger than Angola but it includes Modiakhi’s wife GM Zhu Chen, who was not produced by Qatar.

      1. I’m not convinced of the relationship between literacy rate and chess prowess. Suffice it to say… Africa is not competitive at this point and there is little infrastructure to nurture the talent. I believe Botswana has good support and Zambia has a good collection of talent. Egypt remains the strongest on the continent.

        Yes Zhu Chen is from China, but Qatar has produced two home-grown GMs. In my view that is more impressive than producing several IMs. However, Qatar has a better infrastructure for chess and are well-supported. The nation is wealthy.

        1. I’ll defer to your knowledge of the subject. I think it is worth mentioning though, that the majority of FIDE countries have zero to 2 GMs. My original post was in response to someone who posted that there should be 10-20 GMs in sub-sahara. Possibly…but the most of the world is struggling to produce them as well.

  19. Congratulations to Robert Gwaze. Now the Sub-Sahara zonal Chess Champion! This lad has won countless events and accolades including a 100% Gold Medal perfomance at the olympiad.

    Clearly, if you were an genuine chess official with a mild desire to help young and aspiring talented chess players, Gwaze ( Plus many I know!) would have made you proud!

    Thank you for the opinions expressed condemning the corrupt practice we heard of in Botswana.

    1. Mr Jackie i would have appreciated if you could have contacted one of the Organisers of the event to seek their opinion and ask for the tournament regulations. To label a country of corrupt practices is uncalled for. We have attended events in africa where we were made to pay those fees, we have attended all tournaments in africa from u10 to senior teams..for the past three years. We have nothing against anyone. The mentioned players play in most of our tournaments. Nonetheless we respect your opinion.

  20. By the way, to clarify, when I wrote “…competitive against countries…”, the context was that certain African countries are competitive against certain non-African countries. I didn’t mean sub-sahara overall was “competitive”.

  21. Kelapile, thanks for your reply. First of all let me clarify this; I have not labelled a country of corrupt practices. Furthermore, the practice of demanding that a player stay in the hotel hosting the chess event is a corrupt practice in my opinion and I am glad you respect that. Just soberly imagine what will happen to the price of accommodation for players if this was to become the norm!

    You mention that you have travelled to events chesswise. I can assure you that there has never been an insistence that this insane REGULATION be adhered to anywhere in Africa. I am not aware of it. In RSA it will be unlawfull, and could lead to the organiser be jailed or fined (As opined by my legal expert).

    I indeed got in touch with Boikhutsoane and expressed my disgust and disappointment. Particularly because i trusted his desire to foster progress in Chess Africa. At least that’s what he espoused to me personally when he campaigned for the BCF office. He dismissed my argument by saying ” someone must pay for Makoto’s accomodation”, Well, didn’t need it. He had made arrangements to stay with family or friend! What’s wrong there?

    Kelapile (And all those keen!); Do you remember a certain Mr. Wanda? Well? Did he not present BCF with a chess Golden era? Let me tell you something; the day he was forcibly removed from office by those who accused him of corruption and embezzlement, I went on record saying that those false accusations will cost BCF by halting the steady progress that was prevalent. But ironically usher in an era of the very accusations. This is Africa, its easy to see! Under his stewartship Botswana team beat Zambia team 3,5-0,5!!! Today? The score could be reversed. Ok, Khetho (Bots) beat Jere (Zam) at the very Zonal in discussion, he may prevent a 4-0 white-wash! So let’s agree at least to this Zambia 3- BCF 1. OK?

  22. Photos from Subzonal 4.3 (Gaborone, Botswana)
    (Patrick Li-Ying)

    IM Robert Gwaze

    IM Robert Gwaze

    Patrick Li-Ying (Mauritius)

    Patrick Li-Ying

    Kenny Solomon (South Africa)

    IM Kenny Solomon
    South Africa

    Group outing!

    Group outing!

    FM Daniel Jere!

    FM Daniel Jere

    CM Gaelafshwe Barileng vs. Donaldo Paiva

    CM Gaelafshwe Barileng (Botswana) vs.
    Donaldo Paiva (Mozambique)

    Ignatius Njobvu

    Ignatius Njobvu

    Ignatius Njobvu

    Jere (Zambia) vs. Solomon (S. Africa)

  23. Gentlemen,

    For ten years, I have attempted to provide us with a forum to discuss issues relevant to the advancement of chess in the African Diaspora. The idea is to highlight the ACCOMPLISHMENTS of players in the African Diaspora. I have received feedback that some at the subzonal feel that The Chess Drum has lost its “credibility” because of some of Jackie’s recent comments.

    As readers may be aware, Jackie comments does not represent the views of The Chess Drum and one should no judge a website based on the comments of an individual. Blogs are open forum for discussion and filtering is not a common practice… that is the point of blogs. Unfortunately, few African chess players make contributions (i.e., articles, games, photos, comments) here. Perhaps the site would have more authenicity if people that the site promotes made more contributions.

    Certainly the comments here may be embarrassing, but I am an advocate for open discussion if we remain within CIVIL boundaries. If you want to make a statement to clear the record then do so, but please do not criticize The Chess Drum for allowing such a forum. We need frank discussion, but we also have to remember how many people will see the “family matters”. Be civil… and factual!

    1. I’ve been following this site for ten good years. I can testify it was ‘all the way a decade of song’. The Chess Drum has managed to stay in line with its vision, mission and goals. Through this site I’ve learnt of the great Emory Tate (GM killer & great brilliant games!), Maurice Ashley (history making man), Amon Simutowe (his uneasy road to the most sought title) to name but a few. To say credibility is lost is totally wrong. These great players’ (together with many others in the African Diaspora) ACCOMPLISHMENTS were very much highlighted in The Chess Drum. Hopefully young players from THE GLEN NORAH KNIGHTS ACADEMY as well as many other youngsters around the world will one day make significant accomplishments and hopefully The Chess Drum will highlight the respective ACCOMPLISHMENTS. We are all looking up to you as you remain credible in our eyes.

  24. Well done Gwaze for winning the Zonals. The tournament condition were really unfair regulations.
    I can’t understand why he had to pay US$ 900 for 10 days stay in a hotel. Is there a scandal going on between the organizers and the hotels here?Botswana players were playing coming from their homes, Top players were given special conditions.
    It is another sad chapter in chess. Can’t believe 2011 and things like this still happening in chess?

  25. More Photos from Subzonal 4.3 (Gaborone, Botswana)
    (Patrick Li-Ying)

    IM Watu Kobese (South Africa) vs. Miguel Macongoma (Mozambique)

    IM Watu Kobese (South Africa) vs. Miguel Macongoma (Mozambique)

    Rosalina Sonia (Angola) vs. Tshepiso Lopang (Botswana)

    Rosalina Sonia (Angola) vs. Tshepiso Lopang (Botswana)

    Jesse Michel (Mozambique) vs. Boikhutso Mudongo (Botswana)

    Jesse Michel (Mozambique) vs. WFM Boikhutso Mudongo (Botswana)

    WGM Tuduetso Sabure (Botswana) vs. Monique Sischy (South Africa)

    WGM Tuduetso Sabure (Botswana) vs. Monique Sischy (South Africa)

    Anzel Solomons (South Africa) vs. Vania Vilhete (Angola)

    WIM Anzel Solomons (South Africa) vs. Vania Vilhete (Mozambique)

  26. I would like to congratulate Daniel for becoming the fourth international master of Zambia!!!!!!!!!!!!!!, he had a bad start, but managed to trail blaze to second place,he did this by beating three top south African players!!!!KUDOS TO YOU IM DANIEL JERE !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  27. Indeed accolades to Daniel Jere and not forgetting Monique Sischy. Cogratulations to both! By achieving IM & WIM status respectively in this manner these young chess players can be proud as it did not come easy or as a favour. WELL DESERVED!

  28. I heard there was no prize fund?! somebody tell me more about this Zone 4.3 tourney. Very disgusting and disturbing.

  29. Hey Chess Guru, I can confirm from my reliable sources that there were no Prize monies on offer! Instead there were International Master tittles awarded dubiously and without precedence. Since the winner IM.Gwaze together with Solomon and Kobese had the status already, I believe they should have bargained for Grandmaster tittles! After all This is Africa(TIA).
    I wonder other Zonal events award FIDE tittles this dubious as well!

  30. Jackie,

    They were following FIDE regulations which have been in place for years. You cannot get a GM title or norm at a subzonal event. You can only get outright GM titles for winning championship events. For continental competitions (not subzonals), you can get (at most) a GM norm. Gwaze has earned one norm each from the African Juniors and one for African Championships.

    The practice of awarding titles after one performance (regardless of the tournament’s strength) instead of getting the required three IM norms and 2400 ELO is still controversial. If you notice in the FIDE Handbook, Africa is not mentioned in those regions eligible to give IM titles for one performance. I believe that is not an accident. There is a lot of derision when discussing African players and their low ELO rating given their titles. However, this is because of lack of opportunities and lack of initiative to attract GMs to Africa to play.

    One famous GM went on record to say Africa did not deserve six spots in the World Cup because their ratings were too low. There is no certainty on how long this title regulation will remain. They may do away with “one tournament, one title” opportunity. Years ago, I had a conversation with Allan Herbert who stated that the initial purpose was helping regions with few players a chance at earning titles. However, it is not designed to be the only way a player should vie for the title, but an alternative. The only player in sub-Saharan Africa to earn the IM title in the three-norm system is IM-elect Farai Mandizha. All others have earned the IM title by scoring 66% in a single tournament.

    I remember there was a reluctance to award Simutowe his GM title because he earned two norms from dominating two African Juniors. After getting his third norm in the Stimulans tournament, he ended up earning about three more GM norms so that his GM worthiness cease to be questioned. Gwaze will have to get one more GM norm, but FIDE will not award the title unless he makes 2500 ELO. Let’s hope Gwaze can get some international tournaments to get the norm and ELO rating.

    Regulations can be seen here

  31. Photos Subzonal 4.3 winners!
    (Patrick Li-Ying)

    IM Robert Gwaze (Zimbabwe) wins gold medal.

    IM Robert Gwaze (Zimbabwe) wins gold medal.

    FM Daniel Jere (Zambia) wins silver medal.

    FM Daniel Jere (Zambia) wins silver medal.

    FM Nicholas Van der Nat (South Africa) wins bronze.

    FM Nicholus Van der Nat (South Africa) wins bronze.

    Monique Sischy (South Africa) wins gold.

    WCM Monique Sischy (South Africa) wins gold.

    Boikhutso Mudongo (Botswana) wins silver.

    WFM Boikhutso Mudongo (Botswana) wins silver.

    Anzel Solomons (South Africa) gets bronze.

    WIM Anzel Solomons (South Africa) gets bronze.

  32. Hi Daaim
    Thanks for the reply my man. Frankly we all should appreciate the selfless service you provide the chess community! I get this title thing now.

    Do you have any clue how FIDE awarded Botswana player Sabure with the WGM in Zambia? I was there and many saw it as an election ploy. I scouwered the FIDE manuals and I am still at a loss. If we look at her chess strength now… one wonders how she got such a prestigeous title.

  33. Tuduetso Sabure won the African women’s championship in 2005, so she got the WGM title with a 9-game performance. That is far different from getting an outright GM title. I suppose it is confusing. I don’t believe it is a good idea to give titles for one performance, but norms are fine if the player meets all the norm requirements. I know of one player recently (not from Africa) who earned an IM title without playing an IM or GM in that tournament. However, as long as these are the rules, the best a player can do is to ensure they raise their standards once they get the title. So that means FM=2300, IM=2400, GM=2500 is the standard. In the professional chess world, players are more apt to look at ELO rating than titles. For women’s titles… there is already some discussion (including by female players) to eliminate them since so many women are playing at a high level and earning GM and IM titles.

    1. Hey Daaim, what more can I say! Maybe you should look into working for FIDE as they can’t explain themselves like you do on their behalf. But I am sure many of us who have less time to deduce these matters properly just appreciate your good work! Thanks brother!

  34. Patrick Li-Ying sent two key games of the winner IM Robert Gwaze. The game against FM Daniel Jere was a brawl.

    IM Watu Kobese (South Africa) – IM Robert Gwaze (Zimbabwe)

    IM Robert Gwaze (Zimbabwe) vs. FM Daniel Jere (Zambia)

    1. I remember this other day in Glen Norah Harare when I was playing this genius at his place, I was 12 and Gwaze 11. His sister attacked him verbally:”Gwaze why waste your time playing this stupid game”, and in reply he said:”Sis one day I’m gonna go places with this game, I will be very successful and you shall see”. Congrats man your prophecy was 100% right! What a game. Beautiful!!

  35. This Gwaze lad is just unstoppable, if u had seen how he steamrolled past his opponents in the just ended Zimbabwe Easter Open chess championships claiming the 1st prize a full point adrift of the second placed Rodwell Makoto, whom he also subdued on his way to winning the 1st prize. I foresee a revelation for Africa come august at the world cup in Khanty Minsk ,Russia

    1. I do agree with you Walter, the way Gwaze bamboozled past his opponents at the Easter Open was unbelievable. The Glen Norah Gunner is in top form. Glen Norah Knights Chess Academy ( says congratulations to our hero.

    2. Much of the talking for this nice fella (Gwaze) will be done on the BOARD at the oncoming world championship in Russia where I come from.. and mark my words we are gonna awaard this guy with Russian citizenship as a show of his indisputable African ‘Shuperiority!!

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