Bahrain Chess Club (BCC) vice-president Ahmed Haddad said this competition is a breakthrough for the chess community in the Kingdom and hopes that it acts as a catalyst for the development of the sport.
“This is definitely the first step in returning chess to its glory days of the 1980s when the local scene was just unbelievable,” Haddad told the GDN.
“We held at least one tournament every month, but sometimes there would be more, so we ended up having maybe 14 or 15 tournaments a year, which is really a lot.
“Hopefully this tournament will contribute in getting the players back to that level of activity, and most importantly raise the locals’ interest in chess and also enhance the quality of Bahrain’s local players,” he added.
BCC treasurer and vice-president of the tournament’s organising committee Jamal Abdulghaffar agreed, saying that Bahraini youngsters should make the most of this tournament where four GMs and three IMs are in action.
“We can all learn a lot from them,” Abdulghaffar explained. “We can get an insight into new techniques, strategies and styles from them. They study chess, and they live for chess.”
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