Chess: So Finishes Second in Sweden

World Cup-bound Filipino GM Wesley So made the country proud anew by finishing in a tie for first to third spots in the 19th Annual Sigeman Chess Championship, which ended Monday night at the Classic Hipp Theather in Malmo, Sweden.

GM So, the country’s top-ranked wood pusher, finished with 3.0 points on two wins, two draws and a loss in the prestigious six-player tournament.

Also with 3.0 points were GM Anish Giri of the Netherlands and GM Hans Tikkanen of Sweden, who drew their final-round match after 45 moves of Gruenfeld defense.

The Filipino champion finished only in second place after the Buchholz tiebreak system was applied, which showed defending champion GM Giri successfully defending his title.

The 17-year-old Bacoor, Cavite whiz kid defeated GM Jonny Hector of Sweden using the disadvantageous black pieces in 31 moves of the French defense in the fifth and final round, said International Master Rolando Nolte, who watched the game live through the Internet.

GM Alexei Shirov of Spain, meanwhile, drew with GM Nils Grandelius of Sweden after 24 moves of a Slav defense to finish with 2.5 points good for solo third place. Grandelius, who inflicted So’s only loss in Sunday’s fourth round, settled for fifth overall with 2.0 points, half-a-point ahead of countryman Hector, who had 1.5 points.

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