Unbeaten Barbosa rules GM tilt in India

By Joey Villar, The Philippine Star

Posted at Mar 29 2014 03:55 PM | Updated as of Mar 29 2014 11:55 PM

MANILA, Philippines - Filipino Grandmaster Oliver Barbosa drew with Ziaur Rhaman of Bangladesh in the final round to rule the 19th International Open Grandmaster Chess Tournament 2014 in Kolkata, India recently.

Barbosa, 27, wound up unbeaten with 7.5 points, including five victories and five draws in the 10-round tournament that drew 27 GMs, including top seed Nigel Short of England.

The Pasig City native actually ended up tied for first with GM M.R. Babu Lalith of India, who downed countryman Vidit Santosh Gujrathi, but Barbosa took the crown with a superior tiebreak, 56.5-55, and a higher performance rating, 2688 2655.

With his strong performance, Barbosa will earn 16 rating points, hiking his ELO rating from 2564 this month to 2580 in FIDE’s next monthly rating.

Barbosa’s recent triumph also augured well for his bid for a spot in the national team vying in the 41st World Chess Olympiad slated Aug. 1-15 in Tromso, Norway.

Barbosa is currently one of the country’s strongest and higher-ranked players, running third behind US-based Wesley So and Julio Catalino Sadorra with ratings of 2738 and 2598, respectively.