This year’s Genocide memorial chess tournament concluded on Sunday at Classic Hotel in Kigali with Ugandan players dominating both in the rated international section and the unrated open section.
In the international section, the Ugandan quartet of (FIDE Master) Haruna Nsubuga, Mathias Ssonko, FM Harold Wanyama and Simon Gonza tied for first place after all four players ended on 5/6 points.
The final round saw Nsubuga and Ssonko face off in what could have been the deciding clash on board 1 but it ended in a draw, which allowed Wanyama and Gonza to catch them by virtue of their wins in round 5.
Uganda’s Ivy Kayesu was the best lady in the section with a score of 3/6. Organisers say that one of the main goals of the event was to help players get FIDE ratings and “in this area the event proved a major success.”
There were 40 participants in the international section.
Among others, initial FIDE ratings were earned by Ivan Mugisha from Uganda, Ivan Mugisha from Rwanda, Solomon Nsabimana from Rwanda, and Francis Mutoni from Burundi. Dr Ben Karenzi and his son Gisa Karenzi also earned partial FIDE ratings.
Meanwhile, some Rwandan youngsters are continuously improving. Ian Murara, who turns 15 next month, battled hard in the international section to become the best junior.
In the open section, which had 35 participants, Ugandans again dominated with Samuel Were and Emmanuel Mwaka (Ugandan Chess Federation president) coming first and second respectively after tying with 5.5/6 points each. Rwanda’s Rongin Munyurangabo, 17, took third place.
Joselyne Uwase and Sandrine Uwase both scored 4/6 to finish joint best females in the section. The tournament was boosted by the presence of GM Maurice Ashley, who was a special guest.
Rwanda Chess Federation president, Kevin Ganza, said: “Our juniors have shown tremendous improvements since the last competition, especially Ian Murara, Rongin Munyurangabo and the girls Sandrine Uwase and Joselyne Uwase, who never fear playing against more experienced players.”