Monday, February 16, 2009

Sanchez Grabs GM Norm

It looks like the Philippines is set to have it's eleventh ever grandmaster. IM Joseph Sanchez finished the just completed 23 Cannes International Open with 6.5 points from nine games, enough for him to bag his third and final GM norm. All he needs to do now, of course, is raise his rating to the required 2500 level mark and he'll be a GM.

Bobby Ang reports that Sanchez led the tournament until the last round when he was finally beaten by the Morrocan GM Hichem Hamdouchi. GM Bauer was declared winner on tiebreak.

Below are the list of Pinoy GMs to date.

Eugene Torre
Rosendo Balinas Jr (deceased)
Rogelio Antonio Jr
Buenaventura Villamayor
Nelson Mariano II
Mark Paragua
Wesley So
Darwin Laylo
Jayson Gonzales
John Paul Gomez

5 comments:

Anonymous said...

I am sorry if I did not clarify. Joseph Sanchez rating (unpublished) as of now is 2507, so he has already fulfilled all requirements for the full GM title.

bobby ang

Anonymous said...

Thanks for the update Bobby.

It is most notable that Joseph Sanchez, despite living in France, still represented the Philippines, achieved his GM norms and title, on his own.

Well done GM Joseph Sanchez. We are proud of your unselfish achievement. Our hats are off to you.

You are nother patriotic Kabayan, a true Filipino talent.

Chessbuff said...

Eleven GMs, that was unthinkable back in the 1970s. But everybody else is churning out GMs, and so why not the Philippines. You think about Cardozo and Naranja, and what could have been if there was only more exposure back then. Naranja is a regular at the Marshall Chess Club nowadays. I met Balinas at his chess school in Cubao in the early 70s, a short-lived school as I recall. Soft spoken, nice person, Balinas is prob. the most educated Filipino chessmaster so far, a lawyer. In one of those days when I played hookie, I met this young kid in the lounge of a restaurant on Recto Avenue, held a copy of Fischer's 60 Memorable games in his hand, obviously not in school when he should have, played very well. I kept on meeting up with him to while away the time that I should have spent in school myself. Years later, I learned he could have become a GM, Andronico Yap.

Anonymous said...

What ever happened to Andronico Yap?

What a chess power the Philippines could have. Lontoc, Naranja, Cardoso, Balinas, Torre, Bordonada, Maninang.

And of course Ruben Rodriguez- remember him, U.S. Open Champ? Cool and deadly.

The problem then during the '70s, in the Philippine international tournaments, only select few Filipino players were selected to play.

So that the young Filipino chess talents never received exposure to top level tournaments.

But that was then. We realistically can see up to 5 GM prospects among our young, and some older talents abroad with GM norms already.

Francis Dominic said...

Chess is a game that Filipinos can excel. What it needs, in the Philppines, is the support from the various groups, particularly the private sector.

Before the 70s, the Filipino chess players who competed in various international games were people who practically did it on their own with practically no financial support from the government. The popular Pinoy chess players (before the 70s) were few, such as: Cardoso (a board medalist in chess Olympics), Naranja (who drew with Bobby Fischer), Rodriguez (US Open Champion).

Torre’s achievements became an inspiration and a moving spirit in the promotion of chess in the Philippines. The chess game increased in popularity. More tournaments were seen from many parts of the country. With the increasing support of the private sector; more chess clinics and tournaments, we are now seeing the rise of the young Pinoy chess players in the world map.