10:58, Wednesday, 26th April, 2017

Following immediately on from the PSS Rapid and Blitz Open, the 2017 Capablanca Chess Festival will start this afternoon with the IM event beginning at 4pm and the other Round Robin sections at 6pm.

The IM Norm event has an average rating of 2330 and includes 3 GM's and 2 IM's in the field including Zimbabwe Number 1 Rodwell Makoto and Zambia's number 2 in Daniel Jere. The A Round Robin tournament has an average rating of 2070 and has CM Musa Simutowe as the top seed at 2198.

Games from the IM section, RRA and RRB will be available live on the FollowChessApp at https://live.followchess.com/#!pss-capablanca-im-2017 and on Chess24 at https://chess24.com/en/watch/live-tournaments/pss-capablanca-2017-im#live

The draws for all round robin sections have been published and are available at http://www.chess-results.com/tnr271691.aspx?lan=1

We wish all participants the best of luck in what has become one of our flagship events over the years!

21:10, Thursday, 20th April, 2017

KCF is pleased to confirm that the top games from the forthcoming PSS Rapid and Blitz (22/23 April) and the Capablanca Chess Festival (26 April - 1 May) will be broadcast live on both Chess24 and via the Follow Chess Mobile Application.

These events will both take place in the province of Gauteng in South Africa and feature top international players including GM Farrukh Amonatov, GM Sahaj Grover and GM Sriram Jha.

Players from 9 different federations are already confirmed to be taking part including top African participants from South Africa, Kenya, Cote dIvoire, Zambia, Zimbabwe, Libya, and Mozambique.

We look forward to watching some of the best players in Southern Africa take on the international GM's. Games from the PSS Rapid and Blitz tournament will be available at the following links throughout the course of this coming weekend. The links for the FollowChess App as well as for the top sections at Capablanca will be provided shortly.

Chess24 Broadcast for PSS Rapid
https://chess24.com/en/watch/live-tournaments/pss-open-2017-rapid#live

Chess24 Broadcast for PSS Blitz https://chess24.com/en/watch/live-tournaments/pss-open-2017-blitz#live

18:17, Tuesday, 18th April, 2017

KCF Africa has noted with sadness the news from Zimbabwe regarding the untimely death of ZCF President, Mr Charles Kuwaza. Charles has been at the helm of chess in Zimbabwe for more than 30 years and his contribution to the game of chess in his country has been enormous.

Today saw the final round of the 2017 Easter Open and we know Charles would have wanted to be present at the prize giving ceremony to congratulate the tournament winner's Kela Siame, IM Chitumbo Mwali and IM Rodwell Makoto.

The African chess community will miss his leadership and we mourn his loss and extend our condolences to his family and friends at this difficult time.

09:56, Sunday, 16th April, 2017

Easter Sunday sees the Zimbabwe Easter Open reach the half way mark with rounds 5 and 6 scheduled to be completed today. The top seeds are yet to meet but are all still in contention near the top of the table.

At the end of round 4, IM Chitumbo Mwali from Zambia shared the lead on 3.5/4 with unrated Vitalis Mapuranga and 8th seed, Kudakwashe Sibanda from Zimbabwe. IM's Rodwell Makoto and Stanley Chumfu were both lurking half a point back on 3/4.

The prestige section attracted a total of 46 players while the open section has attracted a field in excess of 150! The large number of juniors in the open section definitely bodes well for the next generation of chess players in Zimbabwe.

Latest standings and results from Zimbabwe are available at http://chess-results.com/tnr269195.aspx?lan=1&art=0&wi=821

The weekend also sees another strong event taking place in Cape Town in the form of the Steinitz Cape Town International. GM Sahaj Grover currently leads this event with a perfect score of 4/4 and is looking tough to stop having won the blitz event on Thursday with a perfect 7/7.

Sahaj faces Kenneth Willenberg in round 5, the only player still within a half point of the lead. Results from Steinitz can be tracked at http://chess-results.com/tnr274937.aspx?lan=1

10:27, Thursday, 13th April, 2017

GM Sahaj Grover and IM Rodwell Makoto are the respective top seeds at the 2017 Steinitz Cape Town International and the 2017 Zimbabwe Easter Open which will both be starting on Friday 14th April. Both are top international events with a number of titled players participating.

The respective player's lists are available at the following links
Steinitz: http://chess-results.com/tnr274937.aspx?lan=1
Zimbabwe: http://chess-results.com/tnr269195.aspx?lan=1

Anyone still wanting to participate is asked to register with the local organizers asap.

17:23, Friday, 7th April, 2017

Report from 2nd CMAT Tour to Namibia – IM Rodwell Makoto (By CM Charles Eichab)

The visit by IM Rodwell Makoto took place less than 6 weeks after the highly successful visit of GM Pontus Carlsson. The tours have come at an excellent time as there is a growing preoccupation with chess in Namibia in general and at a school level in particular. There is therefore a far larger interest and need for chess training then at any other time in our chess journey. The sessions have helped us a lot in our quest to build a huge base of chess players and the train-the-trainer program has been a blessing to help us find the missing pieces in our chess development as a country.

As with the previous tour, the IM’s sessions were very well structured. Friday was used as a recap and a chance to get to know each other while the weekend sessions were split between practical advise to the trainers on Saturday and more theoretical approaches on Sunday. Monday and Tuesday included school visits where the coaches were given their first opportunities to deliver lessons in actual classrooms.

SUMMARY OF DAILY ACTIVITIES

24 March 2017 – Our first training session was conducted in the Thuringer Hof conference room where IM Makoto had a chance to meet all the trainees. The session was a mixture of a recap on the use of databases and a chance to learn about teaching methodologies.

25 March 2017 – The Saturday class was loaded with practical advise for the coaches. The topics ranged from how to deal with overbearing parents to issues of typical conflicts experienced by an average coach. Rodwell explained how to teach different types of children and the girl-child in particular. In all these areas, the IM seem to be quite adept and offered ready and good advice to the coaches.

26 March 2017 – Whereas GM Pontus focused on building up the individual strength of the coaches and dealing with their particular needs, IM Makoto zoomed in on teaching methodologies and how to approach the different aspects / phases of the game. We spent an entire day learning Opening, Middle-game and Endgame themes and how each should be taught. Many of the key ideas were drawn from the IM’s own praxis.

27 March 2017 – The first group of the trainees visited Gammams Primary School which is one of the oldest public schools in Windhoek. The IM had a chance to interact with the learners but most importantly to assess the trainers.

28 March 2017 – The second group of trainees visited Khomas High School for their assessment where they also had an opportunity to deliver lessons and receive feedback from Rodwell on areas where they could improve.

29 March 2017 - IM Rodwell left for Johannesburg after a fantastic week. We thank him for his time and look forward to tackling the various assignments that have been left behind for each trainee to complete.

17:00, Thursday, 6th April, 2017

Shortly before heading to Zambia for the Zambian Open, IM Daniel Jere started off the second leg of the Chess Masters for Africa Tour by hosting a week's training in Gaborone in Botswana.

His tour ran from 20 - 26 April and consisted of Strength Training, Coaching Abilities, Coaching sessions at schools and a simultaneous display.

After a short planning and orientation meeting, his first afternoon session was conducted at the offices of Mobile Chess Academy. The focus was on strength training with the trainees working on their strategic understanding under the topic of piece cut-off.

The next morning, the focus was on coaching and the trainees worked on techniques for introducing a new topic and ensuring that all the students understand. In the afternoon, a visit was conducted to Botlokwa Primary School where Daniel and one of the trainees conducted lessons while the other coaches observed the lessons. The lesson was for beginners and focused on the basics of how to set up the chess board and name the pieces as well as basic opening principles.

The morning of the 3rd day was spent working on tactical training with a specific focus on Double-check themes. In the afternoon, the trainees visited Botlhale private school were some of the trainees conducted their own lesson with Daniel observing. Each coach was allocated time with feedback being provided both during the lessons and afterwards.

Day 4 focused on how to teach kids to do basic calculations using various tactical motifs and the importance of threat identification in beginners’ chess. In the afternoon, Daniel conducted a simultaneous display with some of the countries elite juniors. He then also did a coaching session using one a classical game.

The weekend was spent at Yarona hotel where another simultaneous match was played against the participating coaches and some elite players. This was followed by a lecture on the importance of having a long term plan and taking short term opportunities with Daniel using one of his own games against a Grandmaster as an example. This was a full day session which covered all phases of the game from the opening to the middle game and endgame.

The final morning session consisted of one on one sessions which were conducted with the coaches. Daniel followed up on the assignments that were left by Pontus and gave each trainee new homework for the next period. He also took time to interview each participant individually so he assist with future goal setting.

In the afternoon, Daniel have his final lecture where he used another classical game to teach about both playing abilities and strength building techniques.

Daniel will also be conducting another session in Tanzania later this month and we wish to thank him for the significant contribution he has already made to the CMAT program!

09:00, Tuesday, 4th April, 2017

COACHING OPPORTUNITY IN THE CAYMAN ISLANDS

The Cayman Chess Club located in the Caymon Islands is looking to hire an highly organised and reliable chess coach on a 9 month contract (with a possible extension) to work with primary and secondary schools on the Island. English first language is essential.

Experienced coaches that are genuinely interested may apply with a CV and detailed references to school@caymanchess.com.
Salary offered is equivalent to USD 37,500 annually which will be paid pro-rata over the contract period.

Please apply directly if interested as KCF Africa will not be involved in the decision making process in any manner or form.

07:52, Tuesday, 4th April, 2017

The 2017 Zambia Open came to an exciting end on Sunday and saw some impressive performances recorded with fighting chess throughout. We would like to congratulate all the winners especially IM Stanley Chumfu who secured overall victory in the Masters section with a fine with over IM Chitumbo Mwali in the final round. Stanley earned an impressive 44 rating points for his 7/9 result and will rise to number 4 in Zambia when the May rating list is published next month.

IM Daniel Jere and Geoffrey Luanja tied for second with 6,5/9 and Geoffrey should shortly be awarded his CM title having recently crossed the 2200 rating threshold as well.

The blitz tournament was dominated by IM's Daniel Jere and Chitumbo Mwali who both scored a very impressive 8,5/9. They were followed in a distant 3rd place by IM Gillan Bwalya and Chishala Lemmy with 7/9.

The open section also saw some great fighting chess and we would like to congratulate CM Kondwani Gondwe and Mambwe Mwansa who tied for first with 6.5/7. Both players earned in excess of 20 rating points and will be rated 2100+ and 2000+ respectively after the tournament. First place in the ladies section was shared between WIM Epah Tembo and WFM Lorita Mwango who both scored 4.5/7. WCM Constance Mbatha came 3rd in the ladies with 4/7.

A special mention must also be made of Mubita Mwangelwa who earned a massive 145 rating points from the event after scoring 5.5/7 in the open section. He gained 3 times as many points as any other rated player in the field and will be rated over 1950 in his next event. The U/16 tournament was won by Samuel Mwale from the YOFOSO academy with a perfect score of 6/6!

Final results with tournament performances and rating adjustments are now available at
http://chess-results.com/tnr266544.aspx?lan=1&art=1&rd=9&turdet=YES&flag...

The pgn game files from the first 4 rounds of the masters are also currently available for download and the remaining games from rounds 5-9 will be uploaded before the end of the week.

22:10, Saturday, 1st April, 2017

Day 4 at the Zambian Open saw the first prize-giving ceremony as young Joe Phiri recorded a perfect 6/6 to win the u/10 section by a full point.

The U/16 event has reached the 4th round while the open finds CM Kondwani Gondwe, Mambwe Mwansa and KiddyMakwaya all tied on a perfect 5/5 at the end of the 5th round.

The masters saw a number of significant results in round 8 as IM Stanley Chumfwa beat IM Daniel Jere on board 1. He is now tied for the lead on 6/8 with IM Chitumbo Mwali and these two will face off on board 1 to decide the title in the final round. IM Daniel Jere and Geoffrey Luanja are both still within striking distance on 5.5/8 and the winner will come from among these 4.

Final round pairings for the masters are available at http://chess-results.com/tnr266544.aspx?lan=1&art=2&rd=9&turdet=YES&flag...

Tomorrow will see the conclusion off all events with a 9 round open FIDE rated blitz tournament scheduled to conclude the proceedings.

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