Sammy Estimo, secretary general of the NCFP, and GM Eugene Torre have struck back at the claims made by Florencio Campomanese. We reported Campo's statements yesterday.
According to Estimo, Campomanes himself can be blamed for RP's disastrous showing at the 23rd SEA Games when he, Campo, allowed FIDE to stage the World Chess Cup at the same time as the SEAG. "This man-made disaster deprived us of the services of Grandmaster Mark Paragua -- the lone Southeast Asian super GM and the most bemedalled Filipino athlete in the 2003 Vietnam SEA Games", Estimo was quoted as saying.
But hang on a minute, if I remember right, Paragua didn't even qualify for the team. (Brian Jones' report in the Australian Chess Magazine of December 2005 confirms this). And when he asked to join the rapid crew, the NCFP denied the request! In any case who cares who was absent or not from the RP squad? Without being harsh on the Pinoy players in SEAG, the job was left to them. And it was up to the NCFP to give the guys maximum support. Period.
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