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Apayao’s chess siblings start ASEAN Age Group Chess quest in Thailand

SIBLING QUEST. The Sebastian sisters of Flora, Apayao posing before they plunge to action in the 21st ASEAN Age Group Chess Championship in Bangkok, Thailand. From Jerzon Sebastian’s Facebook page

The Sebastian sisters of Apayao finally won their respective games with older National Master Mhaege improving to 1.5 points and younger Ghierzen Lou with a full point in the 21st ASEAN Age Group Chess Championship in Bangkok, Thailand Monday.

It was a walk in the park for the sixth seed older Sebastian as she walked away with the full point after drawing bye and improved to 11th spot.

The Far Eastern University senior high, the most valuable in the recent University Athletic Association of the Philippines split her game with fellow Filipina Ma. Elayza Villa after succumbing to Vietnames Anh Thu Ngoc in the opener as she moved up to 11th in the 14- woman field.

It was a major upset in the first round over Sebastian the older as carries a 310 Elo rating points advantage over the  Vietnamese.

Sebastian then settled for a draw in the fourth round as of this writing, splitting the game with woman candidate master Tran Gia Thu Pham also of Vietnam.

Meanwhile, the 12 year old Ghierzen, who competes for the first time in a foreign soil, as she beat Vietnamese  Nhat Minh Dao to improve to 41st.

She is playing fellow Filipina Ashzley Aya Nichole Paquinol (Elo 1169) as of press time.

Newly invested lawyer Jerzon Sebastian, father of the two, expressed elation of his two children’s participation to the event as he and wife joined their children in Thailand to be witnesses.

He also recalled Mhage’s first ASEAN Age Group chess 10 years ago in Chang Mai.

In the men’s side, the Open 20, top rated International Master Daniel Quizon (Elo 2413) drew with local FIDE Master Prin Laochawirapap (Elo 2349) as they share the lead in the 15-men field in the third round.

The two have 3.5 points each after winning in the fourth round with Quizon beating compatriot Jeremiah Luis Cruz, and the Thai winning over Vietnamese IM Minh Nhat Dao.

Another Filipino, Michael Concio, Jr. shares the third to fifth spots with  Jun Yin Tan of Malaysia and Vietnamese Doc Tri Ngo.

The 9-round age group event saw players from 16 countries and will run until June 27. Pigeon Lobien

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