Gold, silver and two bronze were the final medals tally for Barbados as the curtain fell on the 7th Central American & Caribbean Youth Chess Festival in Caguas, Puerto Rico.
Golden boy Orlando Husbands of The Lodge School wrapped up the Under-18 age category in fine style with a win in his final match against Keily Vazquez Rodriguez of Puerto Rico.
Husbands, the 2011 CAC Under-14 gold medallist and playing an age category up, showed he was in a class of his own finishing on 6 ? points, two points clear of second place Jonathan Fortis Rivera of Puerto Rico.Barbados’ sole female competitor at the championships,
Gabriela Cumberbatch of Harrison College, brought home the silverware in the Girls Under-14 age category in spite of a final round loss against Juan Jose Davila Blanco of Puerto Rico.
Cumberbatch, who earlier this year won a CARIFTA bronze in the Girls Under-16 age category, has continued to show steady improvement and is certainly on track to become one of the region’s top female chess players.
In Boys’ Under-14 action, Barbados’ Under-14 champion Yu Tien Poon of The Lodge School tripped at the finish line, losing his last round match to Trinidad & Tobago’s Joshua Johnson.
Tragically, Poon’s loss not only cost Barbados the Boys’ Under-14 silver medal but also denied compatriot Allon Richards the bronze.
Johnson, on five points with Poon, took the Boys Under-14 silver on the tie-break by virtue of his final round win against Poon, leaving Poon with the bronze and Richards empty-handed in fourth place on 4 ? points.Barbados’ Under-16 champion Kemp Lynch of Graydon Sealy Secondary brought home Barbados’ second bronze medal in the Boys’ Under-16 age category.
Paired in the final round against tournament leader candidate Master Orlando Gonzalez Olivieri of Puerto Rico, Lynch needed a win to take the gold medal but instead settled for an early draw, a decision which opened the door for Javier Rios Maldonado of Puerto Rico to claim the silver medal.
Barbados’ other entrant in the Under-16 , Bryan Prescod of The Lodge School, won his final round match against candidate Master Javanna Smith of Trinidad & Tobago but still found himself half a point short of the medals in 4th Place with 4 ? points.
Kyle Sandiford, a student of Providence Elementary, having done the heavy lifting by beating the tournament leader in the penultimate round to throw the Under-10 age category wide open, lost his last round match to Eliam Gerena of Puerto Rico and ended out of the medals in 5th place on 4? points.
Overall, the Barbados CAC Chess contingent can be proud of a performance which sees four members of the team returning with medals and the other three members narrowly missing out but placing in the top 5 of their respective age categories.†††