by Benjamin Morrison
The second annual Chess for FA tournament was a tremendous success! This year’s tournament was attended by a record number of participants from 8 different schools throughout the Portland metro area – from Corbett to Lake Oswego. The tournament raised over $1,000 for the Fanconi Anemia Research Fund. The Fund will use the money to support research to find better treatments – and a cure – for Fanconi anemia, a rare genetic disease.
This year’s tournament more than doubled the number of participants, sponsors, in-kind donors, concession sales, participating schools, and funds raised, compared to last year. This was also the first year for the tournament to be NWSRS-rated. The pairing program required for rating was donated by SwissSys. Prizes were donated by Jazzy Bagels and Coldstone Creamery and food & beverages were donated by Wall Street Pizza and Odwalla Juice. The tournament received great publicity from the Outlook newspaper, Chess for Success, and the Oregon Scholastic Chess Federation.
The tournament consisted of four rounds with Swiss system pairings. Participants included two past national champions, including Praveer Sharan, a first-grader from Oak Creek Elementary who won the tournament. The most suspenseful game of the tournament was between Praveer and Suhayl Kodiriy from Parkrose Middle School, the only game to end with time control. In this tense match between skilled players, Paveer won with only six second remaining on his game clock, when Suhayl ran out of time.