Barbados’ reigning national triple crown champion Orlando Husbands has added another major achievement to his list of honours by winning the inaugural FIDE Americas Caribbean Cup Championship.
The 22-year-old International Master collected the top prize of US$2,000 after finishing with six out of a maximum seven points when the five-day event concluded on Tuesday night at Divi Southwinds Beach Resort.
Going into the final round with a half-point lead, no. 1 seed Husbands faced off against St. Lucian Reginald Martyr in a decisive top-of-the-clash and opted to take the safe route by playing to a draw.
Martyr, the no. 7 seed and fifth-seeded FIDE Master Alan-Safar Ramoutar of Trinidad and Tobago both ended on five-and-a-half points The 16-year-old Ramoutar, a four-time CARIFTA Under-16 Open gold medallist, took second place on the tie-break but in keeping with the rules which stipulate that players level on points will share prize monies, both took home US$1,375.
Three players finished on five points to complete the top six with Barbadian International Master Terry Farley fourth, Pratul Panchoe of Suriname fifth and Trinidadian FIDE Master Isaiah Mc Intosh sixth. Each collected US$750.
Husbands’ triumph adds to his glowing list of accolades which includes winning the CARIFTA Under-20 Open gold medal for three successive years, the first Barbadian to win the Central American and Caribbean Under-20 Championship gold medal in 31 years and the first Bajan to win the national standard, rapid and blitz titles in the same year.
“This moment is really fulfilling. In the World Open in Philadelphia, I didn’t do as well as I wanted to. I wanted to prove to myself that the improvement is coming along the way I wanted to. It is very relieving,” Husbands said.
“This achievement is big. Anytime there is a regional or international event at home, I always feel there is a need to do well. I rank this right up there with any of my achievements.”
Husbands had taken a significant step towards the title by winning his sixth round game against no. 2 seed Mc Intosh after the tournament resumed following Monday’s cancellation of games due to a national shutdown necessitated by the approach of Tropical Storm Dorian.
In addition to prizes for the top six players, there was also prize money for the top three placings in three sub-categories according to rating bands.
Surinamese Woman FIDE Master Catherine Kaslan, who finished eighth overall with four-and-a-half points, collected US$500 for winning the category for players rated between 1701 and 2000. Frankie Farley of Guyana and Emar Edwards of Barbados, who both ended on three-and-a-half points, each won US$400 for leading the players with ratings from 1401 to 1700, while Trinidadian Anusha Saha won US$500 after topping the Under 14000 category with three-and-a-half points.
The event, which was introduced by the Confederation of Chess for Americas to fill the gap of high-level international events in the Caribbean region and hosted by the Barbados Chess Federation, offered a total prize fund of US$10,000. It attracted 33 entrants from eight countries. (BCF)
1st: IM Orlando Husbands (BAR) US$2,000
2nd: FM Alan Safar-Ramoutar (TT0) US$1,375
3rd: Reginald Martyr (SLU) US$1,375
4th: IM Terry Farley (BAR) US$750
5th: Pratul Panchoe (SUR) US$750
6th: FM Isaiah Mc Intosh (TTO) US$750
1st: WFM Catherine Kaslan (SUR) US$500
2nd: Imaan Kalidjo (SUR) US$166.67
3rd: Frank Sears (TTO) US$166.67
4th: WCM Katrina Blackman (BAR) US$166.67
1st: Frankie Farley (GUY) US400
2nd: Emar Edwards (BAR) US$400
3rd: Vanessa Greenidge (BAR) US$100
4th: Cyprian LaTouche (BAR) US$100
ELO 1400-1000 and unrated
1st: Anusha Saha (TT0) US$500
2nd: Kiarra Eversley (BAR) US$125
3rd: Rory Prescod (BAR) US$125
4th: Ethan Lee (GUY) US$125
5th: Chester Grant (ANT) US$125
Champion Orlando Husbands (right) of Barbados receiving the top prize from Confederation of Chess for Americas president Jorge Vega. (BCF Pictures/Corie Elcock)
Alan-Safar Ramoutar (right) of Trinidad and Tobago accepting the second-place prize from Confederation of Chess for Americas president Jorge Vega.
Reginald Martyr (right) of St. Lucia placed third.