Philippine pride Woman National Master Mhage Gerriahlou Sebastian suffered back to back losses in the last two round of the 11 round girls under 20 World Junior Chess Championship in Sardinia, Italy to settle for 33rd place. Sebastian tried a gallant stand but eventually fell to Belgium Woman FIDE Master Daria Vanduyfhuys (Elo 2073) in her last round last Friday (Saturday here) as the 44th seed finished right smack in the middle of the 66 field event.

Father Jerzon said winning the least two rounds could have earned the Far Eastern University – Diliman senior high school a Woman International Master norm, but still the Elo rated 1865 Sebastian still earned
58.6 Elo ratings points. Her performance was rated 1970 where she beat three Woman FIDE Masters and drew with one. Sebastian was actually tied for the 30th-38th places with 5.5 wins or 50 percent on the strength of five wins, a draw and five losses.

The older Sebastian said that as per record of the WJCC, the Flora, Apayao wood pusher was the best performing under 1900 player and only the second player in the upper half with just 1800 plus Elo rating.
Marjona Malikova of Uzbekstan, who was ranked 47th at the start “played better than her” by finishing 32nd due to her higher tiebreak score. The older Sebastian said that his daughter played against eight WFMs whose Elo rating was 2000+ and won three, drew once and lost to four.

He added on his Facebook post: “This according to experts was a very good performance considering she only has 1865 international Elo rating points.” Despite his wish that his 16-year older could have won the last two matches, he vowed that “they will continue their campaign and shall join international tournaments if they could get sponsors or supporters.”

The end goal for this year, the Flora, Apayao local government employee added, is for his daughter to get a WIM title. “We don’t know yet how can Mhage join another international tournament and represent the Philippines, but we have faith that God would make a way and touch people’s heart and/or our dear
government institutions to support our campaign,” he stressed. The father, moreover, thanked all those who supported Team Philippines in the Italian campaign, the first European sortie for Sebastian.

Meanwhile, Alekhine Nouri scored 1.5 points of two in the last two rounds to finish with 5.5 points in the open division and finish 70th in the field of 120. Azebarjians ruled the WJCC with Abdulla Gadimbayli
leading four others with eight points winning the Open division, while Govhar Beydullayeva topped the girl’s under 19 with 8.5 points edging Kazakh Woman International Master Assel Serikbay.

Pigeon Lobien/ABN

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