Can the Philippines produce another chess player in the caliber of GM Wesley So?
Martin ‘Binky’ Gaticales, a National Chess Federation of the Philippines director, said that with the support of the private sector, it is more than possible to discover and develop another ‘super’ GM who can be at par with the best in the world.
To this end, Gaticales said he plans to organize an event whose main objective is to search for the next Filipino chess prodigy in the next five years.
“I think that with Wesley So migrating in the US, it’s about time we discovered young chess players who can follow in Wesley’s footsteps,” said Gaticales, also a director of the Philippine Executive Chess Association, in Thursday’s Usapang Sports session of the Tabloids Organization in Philippine Sports Usapang Sports session sponsored by the Philippine Sports Commisison, National Press Club, PAGCOR, Community Basketball Association and HG Guyabano Tea Leaf Drinks.
“As of now, may mga kinakausap na tayong possibleng sponsors which we will tap to fund the tournament. I think it’s just right that we approach people from the private sector at huwag lang tayo basta umasa sa gobyerno,” Gaticales said, adding that the search for the next super GM will not only be concentrated in Metro Manila but in other provinces as well.
“This is going to be a genuine grassroots program, because we intend to search for chess talents even in the farthest barangays of the country,” Gaticales added.
Gaticales also issued a call to corporate firms to sponsor the event, saying that training young minds will result in a better future for the country, since playing chess will help young men to develop discipline, focus and mental toughness.
“Let us help one another. Instead of wasting the minds of the youth, let us help them become future leaders, not only of our country, but also of the corporate world,” Gaticales added.