By Tendai Chisiri (Online Journalist)
24 July 2011
A home based chess academy for primary school children, Glen Norah Knights Chess Academy will have its first at Prince Edward Chess Festival tournament. Prince Edward Chess Festival is for primary and secondary school children slated for 30 and 31 this month.
The chess academy which started on January 2011 will have its first tournament at Prince Edward Chess Festival, had the honor to receive chess lessons from International Master Robert Gwaze. Glen Norah Knights Chess Academy(G.N.K.C.A) is commited to making chess an important part of the Glen Norah community. The chess academy is the brainchild of Mr John Chibvuri a holder of Gold and Silver medals attained at inter-bank games, he also participated in various national tournaments. The chess academy provides a forum for the community to play tournaments and offers chess improvement classes, beginner lessons and special lectures.
The youngsters meet at Mr Chibvuri’s place who said he formed the academy because of his passion for the sport and youngsters at heart to learn the game.”I formed the chess academy after noting that during our youth days Hi-density schools could not afford to send chess teams to tournaments” said Mr Chibvuri. He went on to highlight that soccer and atheletics were the only sports prioritized by Hi-density schools.
The Glen Norah Knights Chess Academy has a membership of 15 youngsters and usually use the internet to play chess with other players around the world on the computer. In recognizing the cognitive and behavioral benefits of chess, the chess academy is commited to suppoort those chess programmes that already exist in area schools while encouraging the development of new programmes whithin regular school curricular.
Mr John Chibvuri emphasized the need for chess to be on the spotlight like any other sports. “Chess in itself is a very useful game, it teaches discipline, it instills patience and also its not about winning or losing but its about learning from your mistakes, just like in a real life situation. It consists of struggle, the desire for progress, life itself” The chess academy has its website gnknightschessclub.co.cc. They are earmarked if resources avail to use the community centres and accomodate the senior age groups. At the Prince Edward Chess Festival they will be banking on Simbarashe Chaviyera aged 11, Shaun Chigogora, Vincent Mabodongwa and Panashe Marongwe all aged 12. Collins Mabodongwa the youngest aged 9 will be on the reserve bench.
In an exclusive interview with Robert Gwaze who is preparing for the World Cup Chess 2011 tournament to be held in Russia late August said chess should be taught to young ones for them to fully appreciate it. He said he started playing chess at a tender age of 9 at the now defunct Glen Norah Gunners Chess Club.” I chose chess as a sport rather than soccer although I was best at both because I felt useful when I played alone in chess than in soccer where we played as a team. He told this online correspondent.
The International Chess Master Robert Gwaze will not be taking the World Cup chess tournament lightly as his opponent will be the former world champion Ponomariov from Ukraine.”The National Championships early August will be a major boost for me to sharpen my skills before the World Cup tournament”, he said.He added that chess is a good game and compliment the studies. Robert Gwaze also elaborated that the less priviledged are disadvantaged in terms of playing in tournaments. He stressed that the elite managed financially to fulfil the tournaments although they are not the best at playing the game. “Chess should receive sponsorship at grassroots level so that everyone is exposed to the game” he pointed out.
Robert Gwaze seated (second from right) pose for a photo with John Chibvuri standing (first from right), GNKCA youngsters and some guests.
Youngsters enjoy practice at the chess academy base.