It was both Angola and South Africa who came out as winners at the eight-day Chess Zonal 4.5 tournament that ended last Sunday at the Scenery Guest house in Maseru.
Pires Luzia of Angola clinched gold in the female category, walking away with a trophy and first prize worth $1 000 (M15 110).
She also won herself an air ticket and free board and lodging sponsorship to participate in the 2022 Shrajah Challengers Chess Championship that is scheduled for the United Arab Emirates (UAE).
Caxita Esparance also from Angola and South Africa’s Anzel Laubscher appeared second and third respectively to scoop silver and bronze.
In the open section, Klaasen Calvin of South Africa was the big winner, walking away with a gold medal and purse worth $1 375 (M20 680).
The South African player also secured a free ticket and free board as well as lodging sponsorship to participate in the UAE 2022 Shrajah Challenges Chess Championship.
South Africa’s Barris Danie and Kabwe Timothy clinched second and third positions respectively to take home silver and bronze medals.
Meanwhile, Tšephe Lebajoa was the highest ranked player from the host country after securing five points and pocketing $83.33 (M1 250).
The Chess Federation of Lesotho (CFL) Public Relation Officer, Khiba Selatela expressed its gratification for holding a successful regional competition.
“Firstly, we are happy to announce that the zonal event was a success with nine countries present in Lesotho to participate in the tournament. We congratulate all the winners, and would like to thank all those who participated in making this tournament a success. We thank the African Chess Confederation for awarding us the hosting rights,” he also said.
The chess body also expressed its gratitude to its sponsors, the parents as well as guardians of the players and the two mother bodies – the Lesotho Sports and Recreation Commission (LSRC) along with the National Olympic Committee for helping them in organising the show.
The eight-countries that graced the tournament included Angola, Botswana, Eswatini, South Africa, Namibia, Mozambique, Zambia, Zimbabwe and hosts, Lesotho while Malawi failed to show-up.