Francistown — Zambians, Kaulule Siame and Zulu Thomas, have been crowned Francistown Open Chess championship male champions.
They walked away with trophies and P4 000 prize money each after ending in a tie of 6.5 points.
Tebogo Pitlagano came third with 5.5 points.
However, it was a great day for Siame as his protégé, Betha Masaiti was crowned the women champion earning herself P3 000.
Masaiti was under the tutelage of Siame for a long time.
In the primary school girls category, Bonno Nthale came first ahead of Norah Molosiwa and Melisa Moatshe who bagged silver and bronze respectively.
In the primary school boys, Darius Banda, took gold while the junior girls was won by Women Fide Master, Naledi Marape, Natalie Band got silver while Oarabile Dinonyane took bronze.
In the junior boys section, Musa Monyere swept the stakes with gold followed by Raymond Maretlwaneng and Mbonisi Mbiba with silver and bronze respectively. Boago Badisang took gold in the senior girls section followed by Onneetse Rankwane and Gosego Moseja.
For his part, Lefatshe Diane, emerged victorious in the senior school boys category against Thabang Phillime and Gaete Katlo respectively.
Speaking during the prize giving ceremony, Masaiti encouraged young players to take chess seriously, saying it could take them places.
She also noted that her victory was her first gold outside her age category.
For his part, Siame urged young players to learn from their losses in every tournament.
He stated that persistence paid dividends. Botswana Chess Federation president, Mothokomedi Thabano, applauded the players noting that some of them had shown improvement in the last tournament of the year.
Consequently, he applauded sponsors who made the Francistown Open possible, especially Mhohe Attorneys who bankrolled the tournament to the tune of P20 000, SPAR P3 000, Brands mobile and Building Material Supplies among others.
He also thanked participants from Zambia and Zimbabwe who took part in the tournament.
Furthermore, Thabano mentioned that some of the junior players who won during the tourney would be going to Namibia to participate in an under 18 tournament.
Source : BOPA