Kota Bharu Blitz Chess Tournament was truly a unique event, held in conjunction with the National Sports Day on 10 October 2015. 8 minutes per player, 8 Swiss System rounds with prize money starting from RM188 for the champion, RM88 for the runner up and RM28 for the 10th placing. The Under 12 category was also true to the spirit with RM48 set aside for the winner. Even the dateline for registration was 8 October 2015.
Kelantan Youth and Sports Department was the venue for the event. It started at 2 p.m. to give way for other events such as cycling, running and aerobics to be held in the morning. Millions of Malaysians were involved on the whole in various sports and we were excited to be among the 17648 events which made it into the Malaysian Book of Records.
Kelantan chess enthusiasts came from all over Kelantan to be involved in this event. Baharuddin, who came from Kuala Krai, won the Open Category while Faridzul Asyraf was second, albeit with the same score. Ariez was half a point behind to take the third prize.
1. Baharuddin Hamzah - 5 points
2. Mohd Faridzul Asyraf - 5
3. Muhd Ariez Azman - 4.5
4. Abdul Khair Jusoh - 4.5
5. Ghazali Che Cob - 4
6. Muhd Ariji Hasan Basri - 4
7. Norazlin Juarih - 4
8. Marzuki Yaacob - 4
9. Mohd Noor Khairullah - 4
10. Ahmad Mujahid - 4
In the Under 12 Category, Muhammad Ajwad proved to be too hot to handle by his peers when he won all his games effortlessly leaving Mohd Syakir Aiman (second) and Adi Safiuddin (third) two points behind.
Under 12 Category
1. Muhd Ajwad Md Amin - 6 points
2. Mohd Syakir Aiman - 4
3. Adi Safiuddin - 4
4. Nik Abd Qayyum - 4
5. Wan Nurul Aisyah - 4
|The winners with PCNK committee members|
On the somber note, the KB Blitz was not without blunders, to use a chess term. The invitation letter to the school students was rejected 3 days before the event by the State Education Department merely because of the RM5 fee. Curiously, it was approved by the director on Sunday before being blocked by his committee three days later. That seriously hampered our effort to reach the primary school students to boost our participants in the Under 12 Category. Personally, I don't see any harm in imposing the fee as we don't want to make them disregard the tournament if they play without any payment. Time and time again we see players leaving tournaments before the last rounds if they think that they couldn't get any prize. At least by imposing some fee, they will finish the tournament to make what they paid worthwhile.
As for me, my appointment letter as the arbiter never reached the school where I work. The day being a school day, I couldn't leave as I please, thus making me late to arrive at the tournament hall because the distant between the hall and my school is around 25 kilometres. The State Education Department, again, said that I had to apply for it through e-Pelepasan, upon which, when checked, has to be made 14 days prior. This is totally new to me; I never really know about this before that phone call I made to the department. I tried to follow the correct procedure in applying for my leave, but it seemed that the correct procedure was never really clear to me.
In the last round, there was an incident where a player claiming for the illegal move. As the arbiter, I was summoned to the table to look at the dispute. He claimed that his opponent pressed the clock before adjusting a fallen Bishop of his. His opponent, on the other hand, claimed that the Bishop fell after he had pressed the clock. To settle the matter, I asked both of them to continue, as there was no chance that I would know who among them was telling the truth. Angrily, the claimant told that he would settle for a draw instead, but that was another matter whatsoever, because he had to offer the draw and his opponent had to accept it for the game to be declared a draw. Fortunately, his opponent accepted the draw without further ado.
And then there was time when the printer's ink was going out, and the technical problem when my laptop which I used to make the pairings failed to respond accordingly, the tournament finished later than expected. Luckily, we only had to play for six rounds, which preciously saved some time. We were able to give out the prizes before 6.15 p.m. which, in my opinion, quite on schedule.
So, there were plenty of pluses and minuses which can be taken for holding future tournaments.