GIRLS EMERGE IN ORCHARD GRAND PRIX

TWO juniors, Christopher Raphael of St Mary's College and Mahendra Singh of Montrose Chaguanas Government Primary School have perfect scores after both the first and second legs of the Orchard Junior Grand Prix being played at the Nestle Sports facility, Valsayn. Raphael leads the eight players in the Under 20 group with 10 points while Singh tops the 21-player Under 10 field with 14 points.

In the Under 14 group, contested by 30 players, an interesting struggle has developed between Vishnu Singh of Presentation College, Chaguanas, and Prithvi Ramakrishnan of the International School who are both on eight and a half points. The field of 24 Under 8 players is led by Rishon Ramlogan of Curepe Presbyterian Primary with 12. points.

The Orchard Grand Prix is a three-event tournament organised by the T&T Chess Foundation and sponsored by Nestle. The purpose, according to president Edison Raphael, is to provide opportunities for junior players to compete, to test their skills against their peers. The overall Grand Prix winners will be determined by the accumulation of points after the three separate contests. The final event will be held on Saturday November 22 at the same venue.

Last Saturday's second contest attracted a total of 102 juniors of whom 24 were girls. Two girls, in fact, were outstanding as they both finished with perfect scores; Melissa Pereira of Bishop's East who topped the 38 players in her division with five points and Mario Gallemaso of Holy Name Preparatory who scored seven to lead the Under 8 section of 23 competitors.

Behind Raphael in the Under 20 group Esan Wiltshire was second with four and Rafael Guerrero third with three. The Under 14 section was keenly contested with seven players finishing on four. Behind Pereira, Vishnu Singh took second while Jarryon Paul of St Mary's secured third place by winning a play-off. The other four pointers were Prithvi Ramakrishnan, Ravi Ragoo, Joshua Maraj, Enzo Kinsiona and Yanna Lopez.

The Under 10 category saw Jonathan Paul of Diego Martin Government Primary placing second to Mahendra Singh with six points and Luth Gallemaso third with 5 points. Daniel Bhola also finished on five. Among the Under 8s, Rishon Ramlogan of Curepe Presbyterian was second with six, Scott Hackshaw of Dunross third with five. Jean-Marc Granderson finished on four and a half while six players scored four, Ryal Taleb, Gabriella Johnson, Justin Labastide, Ami Alexis, Xavier Joseph and Nicolai Nunez.

Caption for the Photo:

WINNERS of the second leg of the Orchard Junior Grand Prix. Back row from Left: Jonathon Paul, Jarryon Paul,Melissa Pereira, Rafael Guerrero,Christopher Raphael, Esan Wiltshire, Edison Raphael, T&TCA president, Vishnu Singh, Mahendra Singh. Front row from the left: Scott Hackshaw, Luth Gallemaso and Maria Gallemaso.