MUSCAT: With an intention to popularise the game of chess, The Zubair Corporation (Z-Corp) in association with Oman Chess Committee organised a chess tournament and training camp at the Sohar Sports Complex in Sohar recently.
A total of 35 players from the different Zubair Chess Centres across Oman participated in the training camp and a tournament held over three consecutive days in Sohar. To popularise the mind sports, Z-Corp in cooperation with OCC has established Zubair Chess Centres in Muscat, Ibri, Sohar, Nizwa and Salalah. The camp was attended by Yahya bin Darwish Al Balushi, General Manager of INMA, investment, asset management and real estate development company.
The chess tournaments and training camps was designed to help players from different age groups to enhance their game standards and help local talents to improve their games. It was also designed to train players to help participate, qualify and represent the Sultanate in international sports platforms. The competition followed the principles of the Swiss System and each category had to play seven rounds of chess, at 20 minutes plus 10 seconds per move.
In the ‘Under 16-years category’, Osamah bin Masoud Al Darwishi won the first place, Mohammed bin Khassif Al Kharousi took the second place and Anas bin Masoud Al Darwishi secured the third place.
In the ‘under 10-years category’, Mohammed bin Hamed Al Mahrooqi won first place, Abdullah Bin Bashir Al Qudaimi second place and Mohammed bin Ahmed Al Shizawi the third place.
In the ‘under 12-years category’, Wissam bin Mohammed Al Maqbali captured the first place, Fahad bin Said Al Mahrooqi secured second spot and Faisal bin Turki Al Salhi won the third place.
Sarah bint Abdullah Al Maqbali was declared the best player of the tournament.
Z-Corp also plans to organise similar camps in Ibri and Nizwa in the coming months.
Ibrahim Al Salmi, Assistant General Manager, Corporate Communications, The Zubair Corporation said, “We are delighted to continue with our mission of promoting the mind game of chess. The chess tournaments and training camps organised in Sohar witnessed a high level of competition which reflected the efforts that has gone into popularising the game of chess in Oman. The matches conducted during the training sessions echoed the top calibre and standard of the players. In the past couple of years we have held several training programmes for students and players to master the game of chess. In collaboration with OCC we had also recently organised training sessions for the national junior chess team to help them participate in the Arab Chess Championship held in Tunisia where players in the age group category (under 8, 10, 12, 14 and 16) took part. Players who dream to qualify for national and international competitions certainly benefit from these kinds of trainings and tournaments.”
He added, “As a member of the private sector, The Zubair Corporation is keen on supporting the country’s sports development since it believes it is an area of vital importance in the national development process.”
Praising the achievements of Zubair Chess Centre, Ahmed bin Darwish Al Balushi, Chairman of the Oman Chess Committee said, “The efforts of Z-Corp has helped in finding a new generation of players who are ready to represent the Sultanate in international platforms. The Zubair Chess Centres have established a high reputation in their respective areas and have seen great demand from interested players. In the coming year, we aim to strengthen Oman’s presence in local and foreign tournaments. We would also like to appreciate the efforts exerted by the referees and trainers in these centres.”
The Zubair Corporations’ decision to establish training centres across Oman has provided a platform for aspiring chess champions to train and continue improving their game.
The training sessions and matches were held under the framework of sponsorship agreement Z-Corp signed with OCC in 2017 to support the activities of OCC to enable it to spread the popularity of the chess among people especially youth.
Demonstrating its continuous commitment to all kinds of sports, Z-Corp has been a partner and sponsor of different sports activities including football, handball, ice sports, volleyball for many years.