The cream de la cream of local chess will rise to the top over the weekend during a Botswana Chess Federation (BCF) national team selection contest that will see 30 of Botswana’s top chess players competing for seven slots.
The national chess team selection trials for Open Section players slated for Saturday and Sunday is expected to be a grueling contest which will see 23 of Botswana’s very best checked out of the national team that will represent Botswana at the Africa Individual Championship to be hosted by Zambia in June.
The two day tournament will see BCF top 30 players fighting for seven slots in a sixty minutes long match where only 10 seconds will be allowed per seven rounds per move .The top seven players will then be roped into a national team where they are expected to be drilled further to sharpen their techniques.
In an interview with The Telegraph BCF Public Relations Officer (BCF PRO), Kutlwano Tatolo said the top 30 players were invited to participate in the competition based on their ratings.
Tatolo explained that “the team that will be selected will represent the country at the Africa Individual Chess Championship in Zambia on the 11th to the 24th of June 2018 and to compete at the World Olympiad in Batumi in September.”
Though the BCF had earlier planned to host the ladies national team selection parallel to Open section trials, Tatolo explained that they could not stage the events simultaneously because one of the top rated player, Kgomotso Ndachipiwa will be participating at the World Amateur Chess Championship in Italy from the 21st until the 30th of April 2018.
Some of the top chess players expected to grace the weekend tournament include, Thato Olebile, Keletshabile Monnaatsheko, Moakofi Notha ,Bojosi Sabure, Tebogo Pitlagano ,Ndawana Mosenya, Clifford Masole, Thuso Mosutha, Thabo Elias and Kenneth Boikhutshwane.