Event: Africa Grand Prix Elite Arena 10, 2018
Time Control: 3+0
Duration: 90 Minutes
Winner: GM Amin Bassem (@dr-basseemAmin)
Date: 2nd September August, 2018.
Tournament Link: https://lichess.org/tournament/OuBFYtqQ
Numbers of Participants: 152 Players.
The Africa Elite Grand Prix Arena proudly sponsored by Avantiline Design Limited, an Architectural Design, Construction and Project Management Company based in Lagos, Nigeria was filled entered yet another Phase on his 10th Night. Due to a slight glitch in arrangements the Abridged Africa Chess Grand Prix Arena was birthed and people from every nook and cranny of Africa jumped at the opportunity to mingle with Africa’s Elite.
One man loomed large over other participants.
It is no other than Africa’s best chess player, GrandMaster (GM) Amin Bassem from Egypt.
The multi talented doctor left no one in doubt of his super strength.
The Elite Arena has continued to grow in popularity across Africa and the world and the GM has made it his favorite hence his return participation this week.
The Organizer, Africa Chess Pty based in South Africa are leaving no stone unturned to make the experience feel better.
This week’s arena had the Grand Prix being more inclusive, and as already mentioned, due to a glitch the organizer removed the minimum ratings ceiling of 2100 and this allowed other African chess players to play against some of their chess idols whom they would ordinarily not have a chance to.
It made for some entertaining play.
There were viewership from Russia, USA and all around the world for the games.
The Organizers announced the likely participation of two Grand Masters from Africa and spectators were hoping to relish this great opportunity but it was only one of the GM’s participated as the second GM was still getting familiar with the lichess app by the time the event started.
The curtain raiser was the game between GM Amin Bassem(@Dr_Bassem Amin) and IM Odion Aikhoje(@Odirovski) in a resumption of hostility between both from where they left it last week.
In a Balogh Variation of Alekhine, the IM gave the GM the needed impetus on move 7 when the IM refuse to withdraw his good bishop from an attack by white Knight on h4.
This open up an advantage for white as black was a move behind and the GM effectively blew off Black’s king side to get a convincing win.
Other early games saw FM Bomo (@Grandmasterbomo) defeating his country compatriot FM Dabee(@Dabee) in a Caro kahn Defence.
IM Kayonde of Zambia (@Jethro07) started his night with a win over @Gupta_approach in a Queen’s Gambit Declined.
FM Harold(@Wanyaland) of Uganda was coasting home to victory with his Kan Variation of Sicilian Defense but lost on time to @Nonsopolo .
The Middle Game
The middle game saw GM Bassem unsurprisingly dominating all his opponents.
In a repeat pairing between him and IM Odion, the GM blundered away his queen on move 28 after @Odirovski played Bd6 also a blunder.
The game ended very fast and the GM got his first defeat of the night.
The second defeat of the night for the GM came in quick succession as he lost to Kharov_2001 after berserking the young man from South Africa and he couldn’t keep up with the time.
The GM went on to win all his other games except for his last game against @Dabee when he willingly accepted a draw offer to round up his performance for the night.
It was a case of almost doesn’t count when CM@KingRazor had his would be ‘honey moon’ shattered against the GM as he was near victory only for him to blunder when it mattered most and the GM roundly mated him. It was a nightmare for the CM as he must have been celebrating the ‘win’ already.
You may say it again that good players are always lucky.
The middle game had a lot of sparkling performances from other players too.
FM Danhy(@Daniel_Anwuli) blundered a move and threw away a winning game against @Tactinhos2900 in a Chameleon Variation of the Slav Defense.
On move 42, the @Daniel_Anwuli played an inferior Bd4 and the Zambian Chess machine quickly changed his fortune on the board to winning.
Seemingly, the Chameleon changed against @Daniel_Anwuli in a bad moment.
A new entrant to the field, CM Nonso Oragwu (@Nonsopolo) an Olympian from Nigeria also posted a sterling performance for the Night.
The proponent of ‘Just Keep Pushing” JKP had it just the way he wanted and was almost top 3.
In the Game Below, @Nonsopolo went ahead to convert his advantage in a beautiful display of rich moves against @Dabee.
The End game
With the number 1 spot firmly secured by @Dr-Bassem Amin, the other top 9 positions became even more difficult to clinch as most of the top guys wanted to give it a go as it was wide open.
@Dabee is still seeking for his first African Chess Elite Grand Prix win but he was closer to it this time around as he was on the heels of GM Bassem and he came second.
With a 2522 performance rating for the night, he only lost two games to attain the second position.
The two losses were to his Nigerian compatriots.
His best win was also against another Nigerian @Daniel_Anwuli.
In third Position is IM Odion with 36 Points
CM Charles(@Hapaku) improved his performance by coming 6th in the top 10 Position.
His best win of the night was against @Beastoflagos.
There were two new entrants to the top 10 of the Grand Prix.
@Nonsopolo on 5th Position and @talk2uee on 7th Position.
@talk2uee biggest win of the night was against @IMJethro07.
In the game that could stand as one of the most brilliantly played game of the night, the FM was deadly and clinical in his finish of the game.
Congrats to Doctor @Dr-Bassem Amin for winning his second Grand Prix in a row.
Below is the list of the top ten (10) finishers of the tournament and the countries they represent:
Africa Elite Grand Prix Arena Top Ten (10)
- Dr-Bassem Amin Egypt 59 Points
- Dabee Nigeria 44 Points
- Odirovski Nigeria 36 Points
- Stuffings Nigeria 35 Points
- Nonsopolo Nigeria 33 Points
- Hapaku Zambia 32 Points
- Talk2uee Nigeria 29 Points
- Tactinhos Zambia 28 Points
- Dapsay Nigeria 28 Points
10.Daniel_Anwuli Nigeria 28 Points
Like aged fine wine, the Africa Chess Grand Prix keeps getting better and the next edition promises to be even better.