FIDE Master (FM) Andrew Kayonde on Sunday retained the national chess championship title at Olympic Youth Development Centre (OYDC) in Lusaka.
And the Chess Federation of Zambia (CFZ) has selected a 10-member team ahead of various international competitions this year.
Kayonde amassed eight points from the nine round competitions to fend off challenge from runner-up International Master (IM) Daniel Jere, who managed 6.5 points. Kelvin Chumfwa was third on six points, half a point ahead of fourth-placed Chitumbo Mwali Richmond Phiri finished fifth with five points.
Meanwhile, Lorita Mwango was the women’s queen on nine points. Constance Mbatha finished second on eight points and Linda Hamoonga was third with 5.5 points, half a point better than fourth-placed Kabamba Bwalya, while Rose Zeko, Precious Nshikokola and Mary Mashane were joint fifth on four points apiece.
CFZ tournament director Aaron Banda hailed the tournament as a success. Banda said the trials attracted 24 players. The national team comprises five men and five women.
Men:Andrew Kayonde, Daniel Jere, Kelvin Chumfwa, Chitumbo Mwali, Richmond Phiri
Women:Lorita Mwango, Constance Mbatha, Linda Hamoonga, Kabamba Bwalya and Rose Zeko
Meanwhile, Zambia Police Service National Sports Coordinator Mr. Shapa Wakunguma has ordered IM Gillan Bwalya to immediately return to the chessboard or face disciplinary action as Nkwazi Chess Club received special praise from the Zambia Police High Command for splendid performance in 2014 at ZP Annual Sports Award held at Mulungushi International Conference Centre (MICC) in Lusaka on February 14th 2015.
Nkwazi Chess Club won the Best ZP Club of the year 2014 award. Nkwazi Chess Club beat other sporting disciplines such as Nkwazi FC, Rugby, Boxing, Netball, Judo etc for this award. WCM Linda Hamoonga received the Best Woman Sports Personality of the year 2014 award for her efforts last year.
FM Andrew Kayonde received a certificate under the Best Male Sports Personality of the year 2014 while IM Gillian Bwalya was rewarded under the Most Valued talent. Nkwazi Chess Club last year defended the league title finishing 12pts clear of 2nd placed NAPSA Chess club. Nkwazi players also won major tournaments in 2014 such as Zambia Closed, Zambia Open, Heroes and Unity and Liyoca tournaments and performed well at International tournaments. IM Bwalya boycotted local tournament due to what he termed biased decision by the Tournament Director at January 2015 LPCA New Year Open to award a certain player 0.5pts for missing round 1.