The Malawi Chess Open Championship is underway at the College of Medicine Sports Complex in the commercial capital, Blantyre.
A statement by the Chess Association of Malawi, CHESSAM says the international tournament with feature 70 players from the host nation and 12 competitors from neighbouring Mozambique, Zambia and Zimbabwe.
To be played for three days, the 2018 Malawi Chess Open will have nine rounds with a rate of three games per day.
Section A has drawn players who have an individual rating of more than 1800 points
With 2178 points, Malawi’s Joseph Mwale is the highest rated player in the section. He is followed by his compatriot Chiletso Chipanga, who has 2162 points.
Other contenders in the group include hosts Gerald Mphungu, Petros Mfune George Mwale, Joseph Mwale and Alfred Chimthere.
The Malawians will face tough competition from Zambia’s Timothy Kabwe, Ignaciao Caricoa of Mozambique and Zimbabwean Fortune Gandawa.
There’s a crash of generations in Section B which features players with a rating of not more than 1800 points.
Prolific competitors in the section include Yewo Sanga, Stanley Kafere and Gershom Chima.
The group also features students from various colleges including the Malawi Polytechnic, Chancellor College and Kamuzu College of Nursing.
Other competitors are from national tax agency, MRA.
Some local top players have registered to compete in the ladies category.
They include Ellen Mpinganjira, Linda Jambo, Desiderata Nkhoma, Tupokiwe Msukwa and veteran Celiana Sanga Nkata.
These ladies will face foreign players like Sheila Sitoi, Nuzela Fanela of Mozambique and Zimbabwean Talidyne Chaparadza.
This year’s Malawi Chess Open Championship is officially sponsored by Mdina, a Malawi owned Construction Company based in South Africa.