IM Daniel Anwuli wins the Nigeria chess federation national championship, emerging as the overall victor of the championship with a total of 7 points.
IM Daniel Anwuli participated in the championship held from 10th – 14th March 2020 at Kings Riverside Resort, Iwo, Osun State and placed the first position in the open section after 9 rounds of competitive play.
It was one of the toughest battles of chess minds ever witnessed by Nigeria’s chess community to say the least. Ten selected players in both the male and female categories, wined, dined, and battled for supremacy over the chessboard. The criteria for selection for both categories was:
- The first 8 on the basis of FIDE ratings. That essentially means the 8 highest rated players in the country.
- The best young player in the country as the 9th choice.
- And one wild card player as the 10th choice.
It was a round robin competition with each player paired against every other contestant. Day after day, the players went head to head in games mostly lasting about 5 hours.
In the men’s category, the clear winner was International Master Daniel Anwuli who was also unbeaten throughout the competition as he amassed 7 points out of 9. Anwuli’s blend of attacking and conservative play paid off immensely as he took on some of the most talented chess players in the country. Coming second unexpectedly was Akinseye Abiola who came second with 5.5 points. Abiola’s calculated approach to each of his rivals made him a very dangerous opponent throughout the competition. The third position was taken by Abdulraheem Abdulrahman Akintoye who could have won the competition had he beaten Anwuli in the 9th round. All in all, it was special seeing the best players in the country go head to head to determine the best in the country. The winners of the contest are the official National Chess Champions of Nigeria and will retain their titles until the next edition of the championship.