Grandmaster Rogelio “Banjo” Barcenilla Jr. will chase an Olympic stint in the FIDE Online Olympiad 2020.
Barcenilla—a two-time (1989 and 1990) Asian Juniors champion in India and Dubai and 1991 Bronze medalist in World Juniors championship in Romania—will lead the six-player cast in this in this weekend’s two-day qualifying tournament to the first ever FIDE Online Olympiad 2020 scheduled July 22 to August 30.
The Chandler, Arizona-based Barcenilla will test the mettle of New York based GM Mark Paragua (replacement of Dallas, Texas based GM Julio Catalino Sadorra), GM John Paul Gomez, GM Darwin Laylo, International Master Paolo Bersamina and IM Haridas Pascua.
“I hope to do well in this event,” said Barcenilla, the pride of Barangay Malamig in Mandaluyong City under the leadership of International Billiards Champion Marlon Manalo.
Barcenilla won the 2019 Philippines National Chess Championship dubbed as Battle of the Grandmasters in an impressive fashion held at the Philippine Academy for Chess Excellence (PACE), 2nd floor, No. 56 Mindanao Avenue, Project 6 in Quezon City last November 26.
Due to the global pandemic caused by Covid-19, the World Chess Federation (FIDE) decided not to push through the actual or over the board chess competition but rather to continue the game of chess through an online chess competition.
According to National Chess Federation of the Philippines (NCFP) executive director Atty. Cliburn Anthony Orbe, only the top four players gets to make the team. Only two men can play per round. Each team is allowed to play six players a game. The other four will be two women, one male junior player aged Under-20 and an Under-20 girl.
The tryout for boys Under-20 players is also set this weekend while those for the women and girls will have a separate schedule.
Meanwhile, Gabriel “Gab” Barcenilla newest music video “Mira” was released already.
Gabriel, a professional singer, song-writer, dancer, and model is the son of GM Barcenilla and former world chess olympiad member Woman National Master Lilibeth Lee-Barcenilla.