Allan Munro of Trinidad & Tobago powered into the lead of the Mutual Open Junior Chess Championships when he defeated tournament leader and number 2 Seed Justin Kirton of St. George Secondary in the final match of the day at the Barbados Community College.
Munro's win left the Bajan posse in disarray as an over confident Kirton mishandled his position in what may very well be the match of the tournament.
The Trini camp on the other hand returned to their hotel jubilant in the fact that Munro's win may very well give them their 3rd ever Open Junior Title.
Munro now finds himself paired in the final round with 5th place Muralidhar Areti of Queens College. Barbados's hopes of having one of its own take the Mutual title rests of the shoulders of Areti who is having a good tournament but certainly will start as the under dog in the game. Should Areti win or draw he can create the opportunity for Kirton or Junior Taiit to win.
In the other key matches played, Kirton defeated National Junior Champion Mark-John Alleyne in the morning session, while number 1 Seed Junior Taitt counted his lucky stars as he arrived in the knick of time to avoid losing by default against compatriot Jamel Richards of Louis Lynch. Though short on time, Taitt managed to maintain his composure and out play Richards for a win he desperately needed to keep in title contention.
In the afternoon session Taitt found himself paired against former Olympiad Team mate Olaudah Pryce of St. Leonard's Boys. Having survived his morning scare, Taitt was unstoppable in his drive to gain the point.
Another key afternoon match was the game between Muralidhar Areti and Trinidadian Imran Hosein. In a dramatic finish, Areti beautifully overwhelmed Hosein with a mating attack on the king.
As the curtain fell on the day's proceedings Munro holds 1st position with 6 ½ points a narrow but wide ½ point ahead of Kirton and Taitt on 6. Mark-John Alleyne and Muralidhar Areti share 4th spot on 5 ½ points, while Oluadah Pryce, Jamel Richards and Amilton Wilson of Ellerslie tie for 6th on 5 points.
Play continues on Friday at 9:00 a.m. at the Community College with the 8th and final round. All eyes will be on the top two boards for the Munro/Areti and Kirton/Taitt match ups.
Allan Herbert--Barbados Chess Federation