FORMER two-time Asian junior champion GM Rogelio Barcenilla, Jr. will defend his title in the second leg of the first Philippine National Bullet Online Chess Championship.
Barcenilla, now 47, lived up to his high billing when he topped the first leg of the star-studded but online-only competition last week.
Barcenilla, who rose to promince by winning the Asian junior championships in India in 1989 and Dubai in 1990, finished with 15 points on 14 wins, two draws and two losses in the 18-round competition supported by National Chess Federation of the Philippines (NCFP) chairman/president Prospero "Butch" Pichay.
The Arizona, USA-based Barcenilla drew with 2018 Asian Para Games four-gold medal winner FM Sander Severino in the 18th and final round.
Barcenilla finished a full point ahead of eventual runner-up IM Daniel Quizon (14 points).and 1.5 points agead of third placer Samson Lim (13.5 points)
Standing in Barcenilla's way for back-to-back championships are newly-crowned Orbe Chess 960 winner GM Rogelio Antonio Jr., United States-based GM Mark Paragua, World Chess Olympiad-bound GM Darwin Laylo, Quizon and Lim.
"I'm so excited to see how GM Mark (Paragua), the first Filipino player ever to breach 2600 ELO in FIDE, would do against our best of the best in bullet (two mins, one second increment) chess," said NCFP executive director Cliburn Anthony Orbe.
Orbe said interested players can go to the official link: https://www.chess.com/live#t=1168951 and register their chess.com name.
Only those who have registered using this form are eligible to win the prizes.
The top 10 players will advance to the semis, which will feature other titled players who were seeded outright and those who will qualify in the next nine legs.
The top 16 in the semis will then slug it out in the grand finals.
At stake are cash prizes amounting to P200,000.