Jamaica College’s Malik Curriah has taken sole leadership of the 49th staging of the National Chess Championships of Jamaica, which got underway on Saturday at the Medallion Hall Hotel in Kingston.
Curriah, who is playing in his first senior championships and is one of a record five junior players in the event, took the early lead with wins over Terence Lindo and Rashade Lungrin.
Curriah is closely followed by tournament favourite Shreyas Smith, Deborah Richards-Porter and another first-timer St Jago’s Michael Christie. All three are tied in second place on 1.5 points each. Five players are tied in fifth place on one point.
Meanwhile, in the women’s championship, 2012 champion Krishna Ray, carved out wins over Ariel Barrett and Aulani Kidd, to take pole position in the women’s event.
Second place is held by St Jago High’s Adani Clarke, who secured a draw against Kidd and a big win over the defending and two-time champion Annesha Smith, to hold second place with 1.5 points.