The Oceania FIDE Zone 3.6 Championships being held at the Waipuna Conference Centre in Auckland, New Zealand from 14-20 January 2017, ended with Australian International Master Anton Smirnov and New Zealand Woman FIDE Master Layla Timergazi claiming the titles.
Both young talents are just 15 years of age and have also qualified for the FIDE World Cup, Timergazi earning outright the International Woman Master title.
In the Open, New Zealand International Master Anthony Ker led Australia Grandmaster Max Illingworth and International Master Ari Dale in a tie for second place, while in the Women’s, it was Australians Kathryn Hardegen and Alana Chibnall who shared second place.
Direct titles were a plenty, 56 in all, eight players getting the FIDE Master title, four players the Woman FIDE Master title, 35 the Candidate Master title and nine players the Woman Candidate Master title.
FIDE Master titles were awarded to Yita Choong, Daniel Gong, Jason Hu, Ryan Louie, Luis Chan, Donato Mallari, Charles Tsai, Leonard McLaren, Michael Kethro, Max Chew Lee, and Eliot oo-Burrowes and FIDE Woman Master titles awarded to Hardegen, Chibnall, Guo Zhi Lin and Jasmine Zhang.
Candidate Master titles were also earned by Albert Winkerman, Kris Chan, Pasan Perera, Leo Zhang, Allen Fan, Bruce Wheeler, Don Eade, David Notley, Jack James, Alex Huang, Bobby Yu, Tong Wang, Kirill Polishchuk, William Zhang, Regan Crowley, Gyula Plaganyi, William Maligin, Leighton Nicholls, Oleg Korenevski, Anthony Fikh, Oliver Picken, Jared Louie, Tom Crossman, Paul Russell, Aurel-John Buciu, Benjamin Lim, John Duneas, Isaac Zhao, Vishal Bhat, Richard Taylor, Stanley Yee, Vladislav Dragachuk, Timothy Rains, Cameron Yung and Alex Nagorski and Woman Candidate Master title earned by Nicole Qin, Vyanla Punsalan, Jy Qin, Nadia Braganza, Eva Lorenco, Ranae Ghadiali, Cassandra Lim and Alanna Chew Lee.
The closing ceremony officiated by Oceania Chess Confederation and Zone President Paul Spiller who was also the Chief Organiser, was graced by the attendance of Hisham Al-Tahir, General Secretary of the Asian Chess Federation and Murray Chandler, President of the New Zealand Chess Federation.