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Phl chessers shock Norway

International Master Paulo Bersamina delivered on the last board as the Philippines stun third seed Norway, 2.5-1.5, in the final round of the 44th Chess Olympiad in Chennai, India Tuesday.

Bersamina saved his best for last, scalping GM Frode Olav Olsen Urkedal in 37 moves of Grunfeld Defense to cap the Filipinos’ sweep of the final two rounds.

Counting its 4-0 shutout of Guatemala on Monday, the Filipinos closed their campaign with 14 points, the same output they scored four years ago.

Norway paid the price for not fielding world champion Magnus Carlsen in the final round as the Filipinos secured draws in three boards.

GM Mark Paragua, playing white, drew with GM Aryan Tari in 30 moves of a Caro-Kann Defense; GM John Paul Gomez halved the point with GM Jon Ludvig Hammer after 35 moves of a Ruy Lopez; and GM Darwin Laylo signed a truce with Johan-Sebastian Christiansen in 38 moves of a Queen’s Gambit Declined.

In women’s play, the Filipinas lost to Cuba, 2.5-1.5.

A day after blasting rival Vietnam, 3-0, the Philippines found the going tough, losing on the second board while drawing the rest.

WIM Jan Jodilyn Fronda bowed to Yerisbel Miranda Llanes.

The matches pitting WGM Janelle Mae Frayna against IM Lisandra Ordaz Valdes, Marie Antoinette San Diego against WGM Maritza Arribas Robaina and WIM Kylen Joy Mordido against WIM Yaniela Forgas Moreno ended in draws.

The Filipinas ended the tournament with 13 points.

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