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Gillan Bwalya cruise continues at Zim Open

CHISHALA MUSONDA, Ndola
ZAMBIA’S Gillan Bwalya yesterday took a giant stride in retaining the Zimbabwe Open Chess Championship title after recording his fifth consecutive victory.
On five points, the Zambian International Master (IM) is 1.5 points ahead of his closest opponents.
Packed in second position on 3.5 points is Spencer Masango, Elisha Chimbamu both Zimbabweans and his countrymen Candidate Master (IM) Andrew Kayonde and IM Richmond Phiri.
The tournament in Harare will be played over nine rounds.
In the fifth round, IM Bwalya outthought compatriot IM Phiri on the top board having earlier dispatched Kayonde on Tuesday afternoon.
Kayonde defeated Tito Jilowa, IM Kelvin Chumfwa beat CM Deon Moyo, Godwin Phiri edged Emarald Mushore and Douglas Munenga picked a full point over Kela Kaulule.
CM James Dimba drew his match while IM Stanley Chumfwa lost to Masango.
In round four, Phiri won his game against Masango, the Chumfwa brothers both won their respective matches.
Dimba beat Munenga in an all-Zambian clash in round four.
Meanwhile in Seychelles, Elias Musonda is in joint second at the African Junior Chess Championship on two points, a point behind three players.
Another Zambian Joshua Mulauzi has a point and is 15th on the standings.
Musonda started off brightly with a first round victory over Harish Pillay of the host nation but lost his second match to Ali Nassr of Algeria.
In round three, Musonda beat Kenya’s Moses Maina to stay seventh overall and move to two points with nine other players.
David Silva of Angola and Madagascar’s Antenaina Rakotomaharo and Nassr are joint leaders on three points.
Mulauzi started on a shaky note, losing two matches on the trot to Zimbabwe’s Jemusse Zhemba and Amin El Fazari of Morocco.
The Zambian got back on track and managed to outwit Donald Mashiri of Zimbabwe to claim his first point of the tournament.

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