Quesada wins strong Southern Open

The state of Florida has become notorious for many things lately. The killing of Trayvon Martin had polarized the entire nation for more than a year and several other incidents have brought the state to a boil. However, there are still good things happening in the “Sunshine State” specifically as it relates to chess.

GM Yuniesky Quesada Perez

The Southern Open has traditionally been a tournament that attracts statewide talent with a handful of Master-level players. This summer the Southern Open had perhaps its strongest field with four Grandmasters along with 20 other National Masters and a handful of Experts. It was a strong field and perhaps the 2013 Florida State Championship will be even stronger.

This year’s Southern Open was won by Cuban Grandmaster Yuniesky Quesada Perez, who tallied 4.5/5 winning $2063.00. He drew with runner-up GM Lars Bo Hansen ($983.00), a Dane who has been living in Florida for several years. In a massive six-way tie for third place was Columbian GM Alonso Zapata, GM Aryam Abreu Delgado of Cuba and IM Sekhar Chand Sahu of India, all winning $262.00. Local talents Dalton Perrine, Corey Acor, Troy Daly tied for under-2300 with 3.5/5 winning $393.00.

The five-round tournament had five sections and was held in the tourist haven of Orlando, home of Disney and Universal Studios. The Florida State Championship will be held in Daytona Beach August 30-September 2nd.

Final Standings (USCF)

Daaim Shabazz

Daaim Shabazz is the founder of The Chess Drum, while serving as a tenured faculty member of Global Business & Marketing at Florida A&M University in Tallahassee, Florida, USA. He holds a B.S. Computer Science from Chicago State University, an MBA in Marketing and a Ph.D. in International Affairs & Development, both from Clark Atlanta University. He has served the journalist community for more than 30 years and still competes in tournaments occasionally.

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