Darini Pouria, Zhu Chen Win Zone 3.1 At Doha, Qatar

The Asian Zone 3.1 Chess Championships were held in Doha with ten nations in men and seven from women taking part in it.

The players from Iran dominated in general except for Zhu Chen of Qatar who was too strong in the women’s section. Darini Pouria defeated top seed Ghaem Maghami of Iran to finish first with 7.5 from nine rounds.

Iranian players swept the podium taking the top three places in the men’s group and the silver and bronze in women. A total of 14 players from ten nations took part in men and ten players from seven nations took part in the women’s section.

The event ran from May 4-12, 2013 at Qatar and everything was excellently organised. Dr Michael Shararevian was the chief arbiter.

Hisham Al-Taher with the two champions, Darini Pouria (Iran) and Zhu Chen (Qatar)

Hisham Al-Taher with the two champions, Darini Pouria (Iran) and Zhu Chen (Qatar)

The highpoint was the participation of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia for the first time due to the special efforts of the Asian Chess Federation General Secretary Hisham Al-Taher.

The women’s event was a triangular contest for the top place. The world women’s champion of 2001, Zhu Chen, drew Hejazipour Mitra and beat the rest of the eight players in a 10-player all-play-all.

Hejazipour ceded another draw with team-mate Ghader Pour Shayesteh and finished second with eight points. Her team-mate finished third with 7.5 points. Rest of the players were behind in the placings chart.

Khalifa Al-Hitmi, President of the Qatar Chess Federation was present at the closing ceremony. Hisham Al-Taher congratulated Qatar for organising the Asian Games 2006 and Pan Arab Games of 2011.

Open: 1 GM Darini Pouria (Iri) 7.5/9; 2 GM Golizadeh Asghar (Iri) 7; 3 GM Ehsan Ghaem Maghami (Iri) 6; 4 GM Mohamad Al-Modiahki (Qat) 6; 5 GM Al-Sayed Mohammed (Qat) 5.5; 6-8. IM Khader Sami (Jor), IM Nezad Husein Aziz (Qat), IM Eid Fadi (Lib) 4.5 each; 9 FM Ahmed Ali Layth Ahmed (Irq) 4; 10 Al-Hajiri Bader (Kuw) 35; 11-12. FM Alhuwar Jasem (UAE), Al Ghamdi Ahmed (KSA) 3 each; 13-14. Tamra Attallah (Ple), FM Faraj Yahya (Yem) 2 each.

Women: 1 GM Zhu Chen (Qat) 8.5/9; 2 WIM Hejazipour Mitra (Iri) 8; 3 WIM Ghader Pour Shayesteh (Iri) 7.5; 4 WIM Dahdal Lougain (Jor) 5.5; 5 WIM Saleh Nora Mohd (UAE) 4.5; 6 WFM Jalloul Maya M (Lib) 4; 7-8. WFM Al-Khelaifi Salama, Al-Khelaifi Aisha (both Qat) 3 each; 9 Faqeeh Aseel (Ple) 1; 10 Al-Ramadan Nadya (Kuw) 0.

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