June 13, 2021

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CEBU CITY, Philippines, 27-May-2021 – The off-season sacrifice of Cordova Dutchess Dagami Warriors paid off this early as they came out as the only unbeaten team among the 24 participants of the 2021 Professional Chess Association of the Philippines (PCAP) Wesley So Cup Conference following the intense competition on Wednesday evening.

The Cordova Dutchess strung two more wins to get to the top of the team standings in the Southern Division while the erstwhile unbeaten teams from last Saturday’s matches – Camarines Soaring Eagles and San Juan Predators, each suffered their first defeat in the conference.

Training camp. Cordova Dutchess players helping each other solve a certain situation during the team’s off season camp.

Cordova Dutchess team owner and PCAP vice-chairman Ariel Potot was elated of the performance of his team even if the tournament is still on its early stage.

“I’m really proud of the Dagami Warriors. The boot camp is doing real good in their performance.  They are all in one house practicing and researching with proper diet and exercise.  Just crossing our fingers that we can sustain the momentum of winning streak,” Potot said in a press statement.

The Dagami Warriors defeated the tough Toledo City Trojans 11.5 to 9.5 on its opening game then followed with a 14-7 against the All-Women Palawan Queen’s Gambit in the nightcap that placed Cordova to a 7-0 win-loss start.

Cordova’s Blitz matches victory over Toledo City was the turning point of the match as both teams ended up on an even performance in the Rapid event.

Israeli GM Nitzan Steinberg spearheads the victory of Cordova as he defeated NM Rogelio Enriquez Jr. in Board 1 followed by the victories of WIM Bernadette Galas over Jinky Catullay in Board 3, Bryle Arellano beating NM Rommel Ganzon in Board 5 and Allan Pason bested Richard Natividad in Board 6 while Mario Mangubat and IM Rico Mascarinas settled to a draw over at Board 4 to give the Dagami Warriors a 4.5 to 2.5 Blitz event.

Steinberg and Galas continued to deliver victories each to Cordova while NM Merben Roque, Mangubat and Arellano drew their respective matches and Pason give the two points to Natividad, putting pressure on the shoulders of the team boss himself, Ariel Potot who manned Board 7 for the Dagami Warriors.

Potot, the CEO RiChess Masters, the main backer of Cordova Dutchess, managed to put Ronald Ganzon in a disadvantage situation after a torrid exchange of moves using the Czech Defense opening. However, the cunning Ganzon managed to escape from a dire situation and turned the tide around to give the Trojans the victory and tied the outcome of the Rapid event with seven (7) points each.

The loss was Toledo’s second as they shared the third and fourth spot with Iloilo Kisela Knights with a 5-2 win-loss slate. The Dagami Warriors on the other hand will try to keep an unbeaten slate when they match wits with Mindoro Tamaraws and Iriga City Oragons respectively.

The Lapu-Lapu Naki Warriors, on the other hand, took their spot in the limelight after beating the erstwhile unscathed Camarines Soaring Eagles.  Thanks to Lady Luck, Lapu-Lapu City escaped with a nail-biting 11-10 victory over the All-Filipino Southern Division champions Camarines.

The game was decided until the final tick of the clock with Ramil Resuera playing the hero’s role for the Naki Warriors.

With all matches were over except in Board 5 where Resuera and Raul Fernandez were locked in a mental swashbuckling, both camps were anxiously waiting for the result since the situation had Camarines was in a position of winning the match with a 10 to 9 lead, while the Naki Warriors stalwart was on serious a positional disadvantage.

However, Resuera had one weapon on his side – more time remaining on his clock than Fernandez, which he wisely used Resuera wisely used to his advantaged until Fernandez ran out of time for Lapu-Lapu City’s hairline 11-10 victory.

Also pulling a thrilling victory was the Cebu City Machers, who eked out an 11-10 win over Surigao Fianchetto Checkmates for its second win in seven outings.

Toledo City also survived a tough game to win an 11-10 thriller over Zamboanga Sultans on its second game while Lapu-Lapu City lost to Negros Kingsmen 7.5 to 13.5 on its opening schedule. Cebu City meanwhile suffered a 6.5 to 14.5 loss to Zamboanga prior to its win over Surigao. RCM