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  • Daniel Cabral

CARIFTA Youth Chess Qualifiers Held At Elbow

The Elbow Beach Hotel was buzzing with Bermuda’s young chess players last weekend for the second annual CARIFTA Youth Chess Qualifiers Tournament.

The six round open was once again organized by the Bermuda Chess Association [BCA] and saw young talent from across the island compete for a spot to represent Bermuda in the 2019 CARIFTA Youth Chess Championships to be held next year in Curacao.

Students of all ages representing various schools battled over the chess board during the 2-day long event, and the top performers in their age groups were awarded a spot as ‘Official Players’ for Bermuda in April of 2019.

“The tournament saw great combative spirit and sportsmanship.” said a BCA spokesperson. “There were certainly some tense games and even a few tears shed over the course of the event. You could tell that the players really wanted to do their best.”

“Using electronic smart boards, the games were even streamed live on the internet, so parents and friends could follow the games live from home or anywhere in the world.” the spokesperson explained.


“DGT smart boards are commonly seen in chess tournaments today. The chess boards automatically record the moves which are made over the board and transmit them in real-time. This provides spectators with a much more interactive experience vs traditional tournaments held in the past.”


“At the conclusion of the event, Bermuda’s Dimitri Goncharov, Young Stevonte, Neil Varwandkar, and Sagurs Cormac claimed top honors in the U12, U16, and U20 absolute age categories. In addition to winning his age category, young Dimitri Goncharov had a particularly noteworthy performance with a perfect score of 6/6 and was the overall winner of the tournament.

“With only 4-months to go until CARIFTA 2019, the BCA has already begun preparation for our official players and any others who decide to join the Bermuda contingent. Additionally, the BCA is looking to form a girls’ team to compete alongside the boys at CARIFTA and are appealing for any of our island’s young female chess players and potential sponsors to reach out to us.


“The BCA would like to take this opportunity to extend its thanks to the wonderful staff at Elbow Beach for accommodating our young players, and to all the parents and players whose presence made the event an overwhelming success. For more information we encourage interested parties to email us at:”

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