Teener Canino and Mordido share National Chess Championship lead

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THE PAIR OF GIGANTIC SHOCKERS catapulted the six-time Asian Age Group champion Ruelle Canino to the top alongside Woman Grandmaster (WGM) candidate Kylen Joy Mordido. — FACEBOOK.COM/NCFPCHESS

WHEN Woman Grandmaster (WGM) Janelle Mae Frayna, the country’s top lady chesser today, was asked early this year who she thinks would be the future of Philippine women’s chess, she named Ruelle Canino without batting an eyelash.

She was proven right as the 15-year-old wunderkind from Cagayan de Oro caught two big fishes in battle-scarred Olympiad veterans Marie Antoinette San Diego and Bernadette Galas in the first two rounds of the Philippine National Chess Championships at the City Hall of Malolos, Bulacan on Monday.

The pair of gigantic shockers catapulted the six-time Asian Age Group champion to the top alongside WGM-candidate Kylen Joy Mordido, who smothered April Joy Ramos in the second round to likewise stay unscathed.

Ms. Canino has been living up to Ms. Frayna’s hype to stay on course of claiming the one slot the Asian Indoor Martial Arts Games in Bangkok, Thailand this November, one of the three seats to the FIDE World Chess Olympiad-bound team in Budapest, Hungary this September and the top purse worth P85,000 courtesy of host Malolos City Mayor Christian Natividad. The six-time Asian Age Group champion was shooting for a third straight win against Woman FIDE Master Allaney Jia Doroy in the third round at press time.

Half a point behind were WFMs Cherry Ann Mejia, who split the point with former national titlist WIM Jan Jodilyn Fronda, and WIM Shania Mae Mendoza, who downed Jarel Renz Lacambra.

With a point to show was a group composed of Mmess. Fronda, Galas, San Diego and Mhage Gerriahlou Sebastian in this event organized by the NCFP and backed by the PSC and POC. — Joey Villar