MANILA, Philippines – On a day John Marvin Miciano showed how close he is to becoming the country's strongest Philippine-based chess player, a last-round defeat at the Asian Universities Chess Championship cost him a podium finish.
Miciano wound up tied with fellow Philippine bet Paulo Bersamina with 5.5 points in the 9-round event played in Tagaytay where Indonesian Yoseph Taher, who scored 7 points, emerged as winner.
But the 17-year-old got a consolation as his FEU juniors squad finished 3rd behind Gunadarma University and Shanghai University of Finance and Economics in the team event.
It would have been a nice feather in Miciano's cap to get a bronze medal to mark his rapid growth. Last year, Miciano won the Asian Youth Under-18 to become an International Master.
There are still tests ahead for the FEU high school graduate as his foes have studied his game very well, and noted some tendencies, among which is that he seldom fights for an early initiative but wears one down with patience and technique.
In the June rating list by FIDE, the World Chess Federation, Miciano was ranked 7th at 2459, one point below Eugene Torre and two below John Paul Gomez.
But his lofty rating might go down as Miciano still has to play in Monday's semifinal of the national championship, and after a few days, take part in the Asean age group championship in Davao City.
Despite Miciano's rapid rise, FEU coach Jayson Gonzales said: "The best few tournaments will be crucial."
And in that vein, so would the outlook for the Philippines' brightest young chess talent. – Rappler.com