Friday, July 02, 2010


The July 2010 FIDE rating is out. And NO, we still don't have our own Grandmaster. What ever is needed for our highest rated player, IM Mas Hafizulhelmi to become a Grandmaster? Personally, I feel disappointed when none of our four IMs (Mas Hafizulhelmi, Mok Tze Meng, Jimmy Liew and Lim Yee Weng) manages to convert their status to a GM. A look at their rating charts for the past decade indicates that IM Mok looks like the best bet to become our first GM. He steadily increases his rating which now peaks at 2416. Whereas IM Mas now stands at 2422, which is lower than his personal best of 2456 in 2001. While age is not a barrier for most of them (IM Jimmy is the only one who deserve the 'Golden Age' title), but lack of really competitive battle against really good opponents maybe the factor of them not getting the proper experience (and rating points) needed to achieve the eluded title. Once a year Malaysian Open cannot guarantee a steady FIDE rating increase, so they need to compete overseas in order to achieve it. Playing against lower rated opponents only decrease their strengths, especially against Malaysian players who I think most of them are very lazy in studying proper chess, and are focused instead on winning allegros only. But proper funds and time allocation are needed if they are to make this journey, so we will wait for our first GM for a very long time indeed.

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