Africa chess fire is spreading rapidly in the new chess year. From down South in Zone 4.5, we go up North to Zone 4.1 where fierce board battles have emerged in Tunisia from yesterday , 13th March , 2022 to 20th March 2022 .
A total of 14 players from Zone 4.1 countries: Morocco, Egypt, Tunisia , Libya , and Algeria are participating in this year’s Zone 4.1 Africa Individual Chess Championships. This is an improvement from the 2019 Zone 4.1 event that was held in Oran Algeria, which only registered 10 participants.
The Zone failed to hold OTB events in 2020 and 2021 due to lack of funding and the restrictions of the Covid 19 pandemic.
However, ironically, for reasons we are yet to establish, they are only playing in the Open Section which is a setback to this year’s world chess theme of ‘Year of Women in Chess’
Nevertheless, the tournament promises fireworks. The top 5 rated players that are expected to keep the tournament boiling are FM Msellek Ilyass 2411 (Morocco), FM Sadek Sameh 2233 (Egypt) , CM Ben Ammar Mohamed 2173 (Tunisia) , Ben Brahem Aymen 2172 (Tunisia) , FM Gator Mosab 2133 (Libya)
GM Bilel Bellahcene, the defending champion of the Zone 4.1 Chess domain is not available to defend his title.
At the 2020 chess World Cup in Khanty Mansiysk , Russia , the Zone contributed 2 representatives in GM Bilel Bellahcene and IM Zaibi Amir of Tunisia, who are both not available for this event.
The tournament promises to be a thrilling one as there are lucrative prizes for the winners.
Dr Marouane Tabti of Algeria is the current president of Zone 4.1
For for details of the tournament , go to the following link