2013 African Individual Championships (Tunis, Tunisia)

Algeria Angola Botswana Egypt Libya Morocco South Africa Tunisia

The African continental championship has begun in Tunis, Tunisia and three spots for the World Cup qualifying tournament (Tromso, Norway, 10th August-5th September) are at stake. The field appears to be tremendously void of players from Sub-Saharan Africa, most notably from Zambia who announced plans to withdraw a week ago. Thus, this field will raise questions on the implementation and execution of future events.

The 2013 field is headlined by the Egyptian GMs Ahmed Adly (defending champion) and Bassem Amin are are touted as the continent’s top two players. Essam El-Gindy rounds out the trio of Egyptian GMs and with GM Slim Belkhodja of Algeria being the remaining GM. GM-elect Kenny Solomon of South Africa will attempt to climb the ELO ladder with a strong showing. The field contains a number of aspirants out of the eight countries listed. In the men’s field there are 28 players (led by 7 Tunisian, 6 Egyptian) and 16 in the women’s field (5 Tunisian, 4 Egyptian).

The African Chess Union and Tunisian Chess Federation (TCF) are hosts of the tourney and it is being held at the 4th STARS Hotel in Tunis running from May 17th (day of arrival) until May 28th 2013 (day of departure).

2013 African Individual Chess Championships
May 17th – May 28th, 2013 (Tunis, Tunisia)
Open Section
1 Amin, Bassem GM Egypt
2 Adly, Ahmed GM Egypt
3 El-Gindy, Essam GM Egypt
4 Haddouche, Mohamed IM Algeria
5 Ezat, Mohamed IM Egypt
6 Arab, Adlane IM Algeria
7 Belkhodja, Slim GM Tunisia
8 Abdel-Razik, Khaled IM Egypt
9 Solomon, Kenny IM S. Africa
10 Adnani, Moklis FM Morocco
11 Sarwat, Walaa IM Egypt
12 Hifad, Rachid FM Morocco
13 Zaibi, Amir CM Tunisia
14 Van Den Heever, Donovan FM S. Africa
15 Elarbi Abobker Libya
16 Amdouni, Zoubaier FM Tunisia
17 Njobvu Ignatius FM Botswana
18 Boudriga, Med Ali Tunisia
19 Bouaziz, Mehdi CM Tunisia
20 Asabri Hussien FM Libya
21 Miguel, Sergio Angola
22 Nafri, Khalil Morocco
23 Oliveira, Luciano Angola
24 Solomons, Deon FM S. Africa
25 Bouzidi, Ahmed Tunisia
26 Taeib, Sahbi Tunisia
27 Al-Zayat, Ahmed FM Libya
28 Nassr Ali FM Algeria
Women’s Section
1 Mezioud, Amina WIM Algeria
2 Wafa, Shrook WIM Egypt
3 Solomons, Anzel WIM S. Africa
4 Moaataz, Ayah WFM Egypt
5 Abdi Zineb, Dina WIM Algeria
6 Mudongo, Boikhutso WIM Botswana
7 Elansary, Eman WCM Egypt
8 Tlale, Tshepang WIM S. Africa
9 Lopang, Tshepiso WIM Botswana
10 Abdelmenaem, Sohayla WFM Egypt
11 Nouali, Djouher Algeria
12 Baktach, Nesrine WFM Tunisia
13 Meddeb, Chadha WIM Tunisia
14 Marzouk Amira WCM Tunisia
15 Matoussi, Amani Tunisia
16 Lahmar, Chaima Tunisia
Facebook (English, Arabic)

Venue for the 2013 African Individual Championships

Host Committee!

Technical Meeting

Playing Hall… good conditions!
All photos by Hassan Khaled.

Organizer: Chedly RAHMANI (rahmani_chedly@yahoo.fr)
Treasurer: Kais CHELLI (kais.chelli@gmail.com)
Contact Person: Kais CHELLI (Mobile phone: 00 216 55 114245)
Men: https://chess-results.com/tnr100566.aspx?art=0&lan=1&flag=30&wi=821
Women: https://chess-results.com/tnr101405.aspx?art=0&lan=1&flag=30&wi=821


  1. Round #1
    Saturday, 18 May 2013

    GM Ahmed Adly (Egypt) vs. Abobker Elarbi (Libya)

    IM Kenny Solomon (South Africa) waiting along
    with Ahmed Bouzidi (Tunisia)

    Arbiter makes first move as GM Bassem Amin observes. Let the games begin!

    Amani Matoussi (Tunisia) vs. WCM Eman Elansary (Egypt). WIM Tshepang Tlale of South Africa in background.

    Arbiter plays Tshepiso Lopang’s opening move.

    Video of Round #1

    Video and Photos by Hassan Khaled.

    1. Report on Round #1 by South Africa’s MARIUS VAN ZYL
      (content has been edited by The Chess Drum)

      * * *

      Things to get used to:

      * Every one smokes
      * No water or coffee in rooms
      * Every one smokes
      * Men kissing each other when greeting
      * Every one smokes, everywhere
      * No one speaks English, only French


      On board 1 Donnie van den Heever was paired against the top seed GM Bassem Amin from Egypt. IM Kenny Solomon was paired against CM Deon Solomons and no, they are not brothers. Better for the SA players to meet early in the tournament.

      Donnie went into a Fischer-Sozin attack against the Sicilian Najdorf playing an early Bc4 to Bb3. Black played Nc8-d7-c5 and could now exchange the knave for the bishop. Donnie in his usual aggressive style, played f4 and O-O giving the pawn on e4 which was now under attack from both knights. After the exchange of a pair of knights on e4, Donnie played f5 forcing the opening of the a2-g8 diagonal which was controlled by his bishop on b3. Not a boring moment.

      GM Amin coolly played what is considered a novelty Qd7 (the book move is d5) against Qh5 which seemed to hold everything. Black, a pawn to the good was to show it could withstand the attack. The concern from a South African point of view was that at this stage GM Amin had only used five minutes on the clock which meant that he was playing a prepared line or was bluffing. You decide for yourself.

      Download the game for pure enjoyment.

      Kenny and Deon started as if they had a train to catch, playing the first 12 moves in 10 minutes. Deon had white and played his usual Nf3 set up with Kenny opening up the game early on. At one stage all the pieces was centred on the king side with neither player giving an inch.

      Deon had some pressure down the g file which Kenny neutralised exchanging into a knight versus bishop endgame. Queens was still on the board. Kenny plonked his knight on f4 and clearly played to avoid a draw. Deon thought he saw an opportunity to go after the b7 pawn, but that allowed Kenny to infiltrate and claim the game.


      WIM Anzel Solomons seeded 3rd had black against Nouali Djouher with WIM Tshepang Tlale black against Chaima Lahmar.

      Anzel knew she was up against a determined opponent playing for a win when Nouali gave the exchange on c6, rupturing Anzel’s queen side. She had Anzel on the backfoot with a bishop and three pawns for a rook. Anzel managed to exchange some pieces in an attempt to simplify matters, but unfortunately was unable to contain the pawns.

      Tshepang established a passed pawn on the d file controlling the game in her quiet way.

      18 MAY 2013

  2. Round #2
    Sunday, 19 May 2013

    FM Ignatius Njobvu (Botswana) vs. Ali Nassr (Algeria), 1/2-1/2

    Sohayla Abdelmenaem (Egypt) vs. Amani Matoussi (Tunisia), 0-1

    Video of Round #2

    Video and Photos by Hassan Khaled.

    1. Report on Round #2 by South Africa’s MARIUS VAN ZYL
      (content has been edited by The Chess Drum)

      * * *


      Day two was a typical Port Elizabeth spring day with a fresh wind keeping the heat at bay. I almost felt at home! The Hotel Phebus where the tournament is hosted, is a charming olde world hotel on the sea side. The hotel had seen better days and is in need of a good revamp, but all is forgiven when one experience the tranquil atmosphere.

      IM Kenny Solomon had white against IM Arab Adlane on board 5. The interesting part is that Kenny was already playing up in round 2. His opponent is ranked 6th!! This is just an indication on how strong the field is.

      Kenny played the Super positional Reti following g3 with c4 and b3. Adlane played Ba6 and b5 with a direct assault on the c4 pawn. After the exchange of pawns on b5, Kenny completed development on the king side with Bg2. Adlane played c5 expecting to open the position. After castling his king to safety on the short side, Kenny played his queen side bishop to a3 in turn applying pressure on the c5 pawn.

      This is certainly not a main line with both players being inventive. Draw agreed.

      Donnie van den Heever played a classical Sicilian to which his opponent, Amir Zaibi castled long steering the game towards an unbalanced position. Donnie decided to go pawn grabbing, with his king still stuck in the centre.He was bombarded from all angles with his king under severe pressure. Donnie castled his king to”safety” on the queen side and managed to exchange queens. He found himself in a bishop versus knight endgame with all 4 rooks still in play. A pair of rooks disappeared with Donnie having survived the onslaught. He was, however, two pawns down and in serious time trouble.

      Donnie fought like a tiger and held out for the draw. His opponent pushing for a win nearly blundered the game.

      Deon Solomons with black against Mehdi Bouziz encountered the d4 London system. White played his queen to b3and marched his pawn into enemy territory, settling on a5 from where it engaged the black pawn on c6. Deon lost a pawn on the queen side, but took control of the a file as compensation. He placed his rook on a1 with all sorts of threats on the back rank. His opponent, however, had threats of his own against blacks feeble queen side, winning another pawn and eventually the game.

      Board 2 saw GM Slim Belkhodja draw against GM Ahmed Adly with GM Bassem Amin remaining on full score on board 1. Remember I said this is a strong field.


      Tshepang Tlale playing on board 1 against tournament favourite and top seed, Amina Mezioud was set to show her steel. She met the Ruy Lopez with Bc5 and Qf6, avoiding main line theory. An interesting struggle ensued with Tshepang moving her queen all over the place before settling on c7 and castling long. She however missed a tactic and lost a few pawns after some major exchanges.

      Anzel Solomons bounced back with determined play against Nesrine Baktach.

      WIM Boikutso Mudongo claimed her second victory when she defeated Chadha Meddeb on board 4 and is now co leader with full score.

      SUNDAY 19 MAY 2013

  3. Round #3
    Monday, 20 May 2013

    Egypt’s Essam El-Gindy and compatriot Bassem Amin wait for the opening bell…

    …as does everyone else.

    Egyptian Players

    WIM Tshepiso Lopang (Botswana) vs. Chadha Meddeb (Tunisia), 1-0
    Photos by Hassan Khaled.

    1. Report on Round #3 by South Africa’s MARIUS VAN ZYL
      (content has been edited by The Chess Drum)

      * * *


      The two Egyptian grandmasters took an early draw on board 1. This must have been team strategy to preserve energy as the draw was agreed on at move 17. Board 3 also saw an early draw.

      SA was looking good on all five boards after two hours of play. The question is, will we be able to push home the advantage.

      Kenny Solomon with black against Khaleb Abdel Razik, played the Queens Indian against d4. He soon exchanged the bishop pair for the knights hoping that the knights flexibility in a closed position would pull it trough. We all know the theory “Bishops are better than knights in open positions and knights can be better than bishops in closed positions”.

      The game went down to the wire with Kenny holding his nerves and forcing white to concede the draw. Donnie Van den Heever played a beautiful game with a ferocious attack against the Centre Counter game. He harassed his opponents queen till the nth degree before giving his rook pair for the petrified queen. On paper this seems strange, but on the board it made absolute sense as black’s king side rook was still on the h8 square a mere spectator to the game. When the dust settled Donnie had Queen and four pawns versus Rook, Bishop and three pawns. His two queen side pawns were however connected passed pawns. Deon Solomons lured his opponent to a complicated middle game where just about all the pieces was “en prise” at one stage. He clearly had the better of his opponent and scored a comfortable win.


      Anzel Solomons was paired against WIM Shrook Wafa from Egypt. Many players will recall the two Wafa sisters who represented Egypt in the 2012 African Youth Chess Championship. This is the elder sister now representing Egypt at Top level. Wafa played the Italian game with ensuing middlegame complications. Anzel had the edge for long periods, but conceded the advantage and the game in time trouble.

      Tshepang Tlale faced Djouher Nouali who had defeated Anzel in round 1. It was sweet revenge as Tshepang demonstrated her technical endgame ability with knight against bishop. In the end it’s all about the kings position. Boikhutso Mudongo was flying high at board 2, but found the going tough. Tshepiso Lopang (Botswana) won her second game of the tournament.


      MONDAY 20 MAY 2013

  4. Round #4
    Tuesday, 21 May 2013

    Heavyweight Battle: GM Bassem Amin vs. GM Ahmed Adly

    Angolans finally arrived!
    Luciano Oliveira faces Amir Zaibi of Tunisia.

    Botswana’s Boikhutso Mudongo and South Africa’s Tlale Tshepang wait for the round to begin.

    Egyptians Eman Elansary and Ayah Moaataz shake hands before game. 🙂

    Sohayla Abdelmenaem flashing her most pleasant smile before game against Chaima Lahmar.

    Video of Round #4

    Video and Photos by Hassan Khaled.

  5. Round #5
    Wednesday, 22 May 2013

    FM Moklis Adnani (Morocco) vs. GM Bassem Amin (Egypt), 1/2-1/2

    Sergio Miguel (Angola)

    GM Essam El-Gindy (Egypt) vs. IM Kenny Solomon (South Africa), 1/2-1/2

    WFM Ayah Moaataz vs. WIM Shrook Wafa, 0-1

    WIM Boikhutso Mudongo vs. WIM Zineb Dina Abdi, 1/2-1/2
    Photos by Hassan Khaled.

  6. Round #6
    Friday, 24 May 2013

    Bassem Amin defending top board against Kenny Solomon, 1-0.

    Egypt’s Ahmed Adly vying for a World Cup slot.

    Top Board Action!

    Mohammed Ezat playing for country’s honor which he does with pride.

    Sergio Miguel (Angola) vs. Khalil Nafri (Morocco), 0-1

    Egyptian contingent before the round. Preparation includes an off-hand video game on a tablet computer.

    Doesn’t look like Houdini. 🙂

    Tunisians… WFM Nesrine Baktach and WIM Amani Matoussi!

    Shrook Wafa (Egypt) vs. Boikhutso Mudongo (Botswana), 1-0

    Eman Elansary (Egypt) vs. Tshepiso Lopang (Botswana), 1-0

    Photos by Hassan Khaled.

  7. Round #7
    Saturday, 25 May 2013

    FM Rachid Hifad (Morocco) vs. GM Bassem Amin (Egypt), 0-1

    FM Ignatius Njobvu (Botswana) vs. IM Walaa Sarwat (Egypt), 0-1

    The Egyptian photographer made sure the women had the best shots.
    Very nice… Egyptian Violets!!

    WIM Shrook Wafa (Egypt) vs. WIM Zineb Dina Abdi (Algeria), 1-0

    Botswana’s Tshepiso Lopang charms in her red outfit while Sohayla Abdelmenaem charms with her smile.

    WIM Tshepiso Lopang (Botswana) vs. WFM Sohayla Abdelmenaem (Egypt), 1-0. Photos by Hassan Khaled.

  8. Round #8
    Sunday, 26 May 2013

    IM Mohamed Haddouche (Algeria) vs. GM Bassem Amin (Egypt), 1/2-1/2

    Khaled Abdel Razik (Egypt) vs. FM Rachid Hifad (Morocco), 1/2-1/2

    WIM Eman Elansary (Egypt) vs. WIM Chaima Lahmar (Tunisia), 1-0

    WIM Tlale Tshepang (South Africa) vs. WIM Shrook Wafa (Egypt), 1-0
    Photos by Hassan Khaled.

  9. Round #9
    Monday, 26 May 2013

    FM Nassr Ali (Algeria) vs. GM Bassem Amin (Egypt), 0-1

    FM Zoubaier Amdouni (Tunisia) vs. FM Ignatuis Njobvu (Botswana), 1/2-1/2

    CM Mair Zaibi (Tunisia) vs. Khalil Nafri (Morocco), 1/2-1/2

    WIM Zineb Dina Abdi (Algeria) vs. WCM Eman Elansary (Egypt), 1-0

    WFM Sohayla Abdelmenaem

    WFM Sohayla Abdelmenaem (Egypt) vs. Djouher Nouali (Algeria), 1-0

    WIM Tshepiso Lopang

    Photos by Hassan Khaled.

  10. Final Standings (Men)
    (Click for larger image)

    Final Standings (Women)
    (Click for larger image)

    Congratulations to
    WIM Shrook Wafa and GM Bassem Amin
    2013 African Champions!!

    Egypt Egypt Egypt

    Photo by Hassan Khaled.

    1. I am not certain. The top three in each section qualify… Amin, Adly, El-Gindy. Africa gets six slots. One from each of the zones (4.1, 4.2, 4.3) and three from the African Championships. IM Samy Shoker of Egypt won 4.2; FM Gillian Bwalya of Zambia won zone 4.3. Not sure who won 4.1.

  11. Closing Ceremonies

    GM Bassem Amin

    WIMs Shrook Wafa (1st) and Ahya Mooataz (2nd)

    WIM Amina Mezioud of Algeria accepting bronze medal.

    Egyptian Contingent

    WFM Sohayla Adbelmenaem and WCM Eman Elansary

    Photos by Hassan Khaled (Egyptian Chess Federation).

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