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Megan Paragua wins tournament, earns Woman Fide Master title

Filipino-American Megan Althea Obrero Paragua emerged champion in her age group and earned an outright Woman Fide Master (WFM) title by virtue of her excellent showing in the 33rd Pan-American Youth Chess Festival 2023 that concluded on Friday (Manila time) in Chicago, Illinois.

Filipino-American Megan Paragua (right), niece of Grandmaster Mark Paragua, takes on Antia Vazquez Sanchez of Mexico in the first round. CONTRIBUTED PHOTO

Paragua, who is based in New York, drew with Audrey Keyan Li of the USA in the last round to hike her nine-round total to 7.5 points on account of six wins and three draws to rule the girls 12-under category in standard time control (90 minutes plus 30 seconds increment) chess event.

Also finishing with 7.5 points in this Swiss system tournament was Rae Chen of Canada, who was relegated to second place after the tie-break was applied.

For topping the event, the 10-year-old Paragua will also get an outright Woman Fide Master title.

She is the daughter of Jan Vincent Paragua, younger brother of Grandmaster Mark Paragua.

The fifth grader at Columbia Grammar Preparatory School in New York City scored victories over Antia Vazquez Sanchez of Mexico in the first round, Whitney Tse of the USA in the second round, Laura Valentina Pardo Useche of Colombia in the fifth round, Rae Chen of Canada in the sixth round, Arabella Fang of the USA in the seventh round and Iris Nicole Mollo Figueroa of Bolivia in the eighth round.

She also drew with Anvitha Penagalapati of the USA in the third round, Olivia Laido of the USA in the fourth round and Li in the ninth and final round.

Rounding out to the top 10 are Jwalanthi Ram (6.5 pts.), Michelle Zhang (6.5), Li (6.5), Fang (6), Figueroa (5.5), Ellery Zhang (5.5), Laura Valentina Pardo Useche (5.5) and Sophia Sun (5.5) in this order.

In her two previous tournaments, the young Paragua placed third in the Weeramantry National blitz chess tournament of state champions 1800-2199 Section and the 11th Annual WIM Ruth Haring National Chess Tournament held in Grand Rapids, Michigan.

Credit belongs to : www.manilatimes.net

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