Bitoon wins in dramatic last round, joins Barbosa as the Philippines latest tile holders

The DYTM Raja Dr. Nazrin Shah Invitational Masters proved a huge success with three grandmaster norms producing two new Grandmasters in Oliver Barbosa and Richard Bitoon from the Philippines and confirming one International Master in Uzbekistan’s Jahongir Vakhidov.

In a tense last round encounter where only a win would do, Bitoon, despite having the Black pieces, threw everything including the kitchen sink at his until then ultra solid and unbeaten opponent, Grandmaster Tahir Vakhidov to take the victory that won him the long overdue and well deserved Grandmaster title.

Earlier Johangir Vakhidov achieved his first ever Grandmaster norm to go along with the International Master title when he drew quickly with Singapore Grandmaster Wong Meng Kong.

Tahir Vakhidov - Richard Bitoon

Wong Meng Kong - Johangir Vakhidov

Final standings:
1 IM Barbosa Oliver PHI 2538 – 7
2 IM Vakhidov Jahongir UZB 2392 – 6.5
3 IM Bitoon Richard PHI 2504 – 6.5
4 IM Das Arghyadip IND 2461 – 5.5
5 GM Vakhidov Tahir UZB 2485 – 4.5
6 IM Goh Wei Ming Kevin SIN 2449 – 4
7 IM Nguyen Van Huy VIE 2449 – 3.5
8 GM Nguyen Anh Dung VIE 2479 – 3
9 IM Mas Hafizulhelmi MAS 2413 – 2.5
10 GM Wong Meng Kong SIN 2355 – 2

Report by Peter Long

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