African Youth Chess Championship kicks off at The Boardwalk


The opening ceremony for the 2016 African Youth Chess Championship was held on Sunday at The Boardwalk’s International Convention Centre in Summerstrand, Port Elizabeth.

This is the second time that the championships are being hosted in Port Elizabeth after the last African Youth Chess Championship took place in the city in 2013 - also at The Boardwalk, after a political crisis in Egypt, who were meant to be the 2013 hosts, saw organisers opting to host the event in the Bay.

Over 320 young chess players, from 14 countries in Africa, are to participate in this official competition, taking place over the course of nine days at The Lighthouse at The Boardwalk. This is the highest number of participants ever in this tournament.

In attendance of the opening ceremony was Brett Hoppe, General Manager of The Boardwalk; Dr Brian van Zyl, the Tournament Director; Lewis Ncube, President of the African Chess Confederation; Bongi Siwisa, Chairperson of Emfuleni Resorts; Eldo Smart, President of Chess South Africa; Joe Mahomole, Vice President of Chess South Africa; Marsha Rensburg, Eastern Cape Chess Executive; Ridwaan Lagardien, President of Nelson Mandela Bay Chess; and Jerome Meyer, Youth Director of Nelson Mandela Bay Junior Chess.

Including South Africa, the other African countries taking part in this tournament are Namibia, Zimbabwe, Nigeria, Botswana, Kenya, Libya, Algeria, Zambia, Egypt, Mozambique, Lesotho and Malawi.

“As The Boardwalk there is one thing we are always very committed to, and that is youth and education. Chess falls into that category for us, and it’s a real privilege, we’ve had a long association with various events at our property,” said Brett Hoppe at the opening ceremony.

Ncube said; “The African Youth Chess Championships provide an opportunity for the continents budding talents to gauge their progress as they test their skills against the very best from other parts of the African continent.”

The finals will take place at the Lighthouse on the 29th of August.