Friday 22 February 2019

2019 Oceania Zonal - Day 5

Day 5 of the 2019 Zonal saw a curious set of results in the afternoon round, with the top 3 boards of the Open being drawn quite quickly. GM Max Illingworth was a point in front, having defeated Clive Ng round 7, and other results left John Duneas and Shaun Press tied for second on 5 points (with Clive). The round 8 pairings saw Illingworth v Duneas and Press v Ng. After a few moves, I received a slightly surprising draw offer from Ng, which I accepted, moving both of us to 5.5. Then a few minutes later Illingworth offered Duneas a draw, which was also accepted. As a result Illingworth on needs a draw in the final round to guarantee outright first. On board 3 Tony Dowden and Enofre Manuel also drew fairly quickly, moving Manuel and Dowden to 5. Joining the players in equal second are Stuart Fancy and Felix Lacno, after they won their round 8 games.
Tomorrows last round sees Illingworth against Fancy, Duneas against Ng, and Press against Lacno. While there are number of possible outcomes (eg Fancy beating Illingworth), a tournament win for Illingworth and a multi-way tie for second on 6 seems to be the most likely outcome.
WGM Julia Ryjanova has already secured first place in the Women's Zonal, maintaining her perfect record of 8 wins from 8 games. Rebecca Stones is second on 6.5/8. while WFM Vyanla Punsalan is third on 6. As the three players have all played each other, the final standings depend upon how well they do against their lower ranked opponents.
The other exciting piece of news is that a typhoon will pass quite close to Guam in the next day. As a result there is a real risk that outgoing flights will be affected, meaning that some players may be forced to spend extra days in the Pacific!

No comments: