Last season in the National Chess League, Fide Master Harold Wanyama scooped a gold medal following his excellent displays on board one.
The Olympian beat fellow Olympian FM Patrick Kawuma and International Master Elijah Emojong to the award, with 9 points he garnered from eleven games. While Kawuma tied points with Wanyama, the latter had nine victories as compared to the former who managed seven wins and four draws.
Board two had Rajab Kamoga from City Chess Club [now defunct] win gold while on board three, gold went to Grace Daniel Nsubuga. Thomas Katairo owned board four while Woman Fide Master Christine Namaganda excelled on board five.
The aforementioned outshone their respective board rivals last season, but how are they faring in the league currently?
Since 2007, one name has come out tops on board one except on one occasion, and that’s none other than Wanyama. The FM, despite featuring for four different clubs in that period has been unchallenged on the first board except in 2014 when his current teammate at Kireka Simon Gonza won the board.
It is therefore no surprise that he is currently on the lead in the first board.
After round eight, Wanyama who missed two rounds leads the board with maximum points. He has six points collected from six games. Hot on his heels, however, are Uganda Chess Federation [UCF] president Emmanuel Mwaka who plays for Chess Dynasty and Crestals’ Frobisha Katula. Mwaka boasts of six points picked up from as many games while Katula has six from eight.
Record league winners Dmark who decided to field their strong players on lower boards don’t have a soul in the podium places on board one.
It is on board three that they lead, with Kawuma tops with maximum points. The rated 2302 has seven points gathered from seven games. Kawuma is closely followed by Kireka’s Simon Gonza who also has seven points and Godfrey Luberenga from Aviation has six to his name.
On board two, Farouk Fauza Kizza from Lweza leads with seven points. The former City player has played seven rounds and won them all. FM Haruna Nsubuga comes second with 5.5 points collected from six games.
Seated third is Mulago Kings’ Grace Daniel Nsubuga with 5.5 points gathered from 8 games.
The fourth board has David Muwanguzi, Abraha Amanuel and Walter Okas on first, second, and third currently. Okas who prior season start was expected to play Dmark’s board two surprisingly trails Muwanguzi by 2 points. The rated 2308 has 5.5 points from seven rounds.
Board five which is the ladies’ board has Bank of Uganda’s Grace Kigeni on the top. The WFM has won seven of the eight games she’s played. Her 100% run was halted by fellow WFM Ivy Amoko on Sunday.
The two shared spoils in the eighth round which leaves Amoko third in the board ranking with 4.5 points, 1.5 behind SOM Katwe’s Gloria Nansubuga who’s second.