LOCAL chess players finally have something to look forward to after learning that Rwanda’s chess federation (Ferwade) is set to stage their first competition this month.
Ferwade’s president, Godfrey Kabera yesterday revealed that the Rwanda Chess Open will be held towards the end of June.
“We are currently looking for sponsorship but we anticipate that it will be a three-day tournament and strictly for local chess players,” he said.
The event will be the first competitive tournament for Rwanda’s top chess players since last November when they took part in the 2008 World Chess Olympiad in Dresden, Germany.
Rwanda who were represented by only three players; Kabera, Maxence Murara and Joseph Ngendo due to financial incapacitation put up a dismal performance after finishing 147 out of 156 countries.
However, Kabera, who is still Rwanda’s top rated World Chess Federation (FIDE) player rose up to the challenge to finish 23rd after amassing six points in the ten rounds.
This display coupled with past top performances helped Kabera break into the world’s elite chess group (masters) last December. The Rwandan is now a Candidate Master.
The Candidate Master (CM) title is awarded by FIDE after a series of consistent performances on the international scene and it ranks below the titles of FIDE Master, International Master and International Grandmaster.
“It’s a great achievement for me and for Rwandan chess as well. But more importantly, it’s a signal that we can even achieve greater things.” he said.
Kabera is now three levels away from the Grand Master status; the most coveted title in World Chess.
Kabera who has played 19 competitive games on the international scene is currently rated 1949.