Checkmate! You Just Got Served By a Pinoy, Chess Style

8 12 2009

One time when I was kid I was playing chess with my uncle. I was around 9 years old and I just learned the game of chess with the help of my brother and cousins. I was thinking, “Man, tito’s gonna lose to me and im gonna brag about it to tita.” Well, little did I know that my uncle actually liked to play chess very often, and he actually had me beat in 10 moves, putting me to shame.

I’m pretty sure today my uncle can still beat me at chess since my skills haven’t progressed. But if he can beat me with 10 turns, then this next kid could probably beat me with two moves while being blindfolded: Filipino chess prodigy Wesley So.

Born on October 9, 1993, So was born in the Philippines to both William and Eleanor So. Having full time accountants as parents, his dad actually found the time to teach him the game when he was 6 years old. Turns out that was all he needed, as by the time he turned 9 he was already competing in junior tournaments and competitions.

By the time was 9, he was already winning national tournaments with participants that were twice and three times his age. According to Philippine chess champion Rodolfo Cardoso, Wesley was already developing winning strategies at the chessboard at an early age:” The young lad would even sacrifice a queen or any other pieces in his arsenal to get a winning attack.” Then by the time he was 10 his chess career just took off. He began competing and winning in several world competitions, as well as even being a member on the Philippines national chess team. He would then compete in several world youth championships, including finishing first in his age group in the World Youth Championship in2005.

Then in his greatest accomplishment to date, he would be granted the title of “Grand Master” by the Fédération Internationale des Échecs(in English the World Chess Federation) at the tender age of 14. To date, he would the youngest Filipino as well as the youngest in the world to attain that title. To this day, he still manages to compete at the highest level while attending school in Cavite of the Philippines.

So I probably would not have a chance at beating the chess version of manny pacquiao in a chess match. I think I could at least give a good fight in a game of cranium or connect four.
-Nes Martin Morales



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