Extracted from CeylonToday - 19 April 2014
Dasuni Mendis of Visakha Vidyalaya became the youngest national women’s chess champion at the National Chess Championship held at the National Institute of Sport Science, Colombo 7, recently.
At under 14 years of age Dasuni Mendis registered a convincing win scoring 10 points out of a possible 13 points. She scored nine wins, two draws and two losses in this 13 games round robin championship and was rewarded with Rs. 20,000, a gold medal and a beautiful trophy.
Isuru Alahakoon of the Navy showed that he is the best male Sri Lankan chess player when he won the national crown for the third consecutive year. He also scored 10 points out of 13 games. He registered eight wins, four draws and a loss. He was rewarded with Rs. 30,000, a gold medal and a handsome trophy.
This chess nationals was conducted by the Chess Federation of Sri Lanka saw the best 28 players enter in the Open for men and women categories.
Competition was fierce as the national teams for the Chess Olympiad will be selected after these nationals. A total cash prize of Rs. 171,000 was presented among the winners.
The last year’s women’s National champion, Women International Master, Sachini Ranasinghe participated in the Sri Lanka National Chess Championship being the first woman player to play in the Sri Lanka National Chess Championship after it was elevated to a FIDE event.
Rajeendra Kalugampitiya of Fischer Chess Club also played with consistency to achieve the second place and won the silver medal. Chamika Perera of Trinity College tied with FIDE Master Prasanna Kurukulasuriya and won the bronze medal on the better tie breaker. Chamika has won the Sri Lanka National title in 2011.
Yasodha Methmali of Sri Jayewardenepura University won second place in the women’s National Championship to get the silver medal. She was the most senior player in the event even winning the prestigious National Championship twice in 2004 and 2005. Thiumi Yashora also from Visakha Vidyalaya was placed third to win the bronze medal.
By Ishan Rashmitha