One of the strongest chess tournaments in Minnesota in recent years was held Saturday and Sunday in the Twin Cities, with a grandmaster ranked 14th in the world winning the event.
Filipino GM Wesley So, 20, took clear first with four wins and a draw at the Noel Skelton Open, held at the Crowne Plaza Minneapolis West hotel in Plymouth.
So is a rising star in international chess circles. With a U.S. chess rating of 2751, he is counted among the world's elite grandmasters, or "super grandmasters."
So, who is attending college in St. Louis, is working on changing his affiliation from the Philippines to the U.S. Chess Federation and served as a coach for the U.S. team competing in the world Chess Olympiad in Norway.
A second grandmaster in the tournament, Chile's Mauricio Flores, 23, is attending the University of Minnesota.
As for Minnesota's two top players, International Master Sean Nagle drew with both grandmasters, while John Bartholomew defeated Flores and then lost to So in the final round.
More than 100 competed.
Dennis J. McGrath