- Tourney is about promoting women’s chess excellence
- Organisers are striving to secure additional local support
As the year draws to a close, Botswana’s chess community is gearing up for an exhilarating showcase of talent and skill at the Elite Besa Masaiti Norm Tournament that is scheduled for 17 to 24 December in Gaborone.
Spearheaded by Besa Masaiti as a groundbreaking celebration of women’s excellence in the game of chess, the eponymous tourney is set against the backdrop of Cresta Hotel in Gaborone.
“We are thrilled to bring together some of the most accomplished female chess players from around the world for this momentous occasion,” said Mokwaledi Tingwane, the Secretary General of the Botswana Chess Federation (BCF), in an interview.
“The mission is not only to showcase their remarkable abilities but to inspire and encourage more women to take up the game as well.”
With a generous backing from the American community (Masaiti’s mentors and church mates in the US where she is based), the organisers are striving to secure additional local support.
This is meant to underscore the communal effort to elevate the prominence of the tournament within the Botswana community. The event itself is divided into three categories, each catering for different segments of the chess-playing population.
At the forefront is the Elite Norm Tournament, an exclusive affair reserved solely for the finest female chess aficionados.
This prestigious segment boasts a lineup of international Woman Grand Masters alongside a select group of African Women International Masters (WIMs), as well as a promising contingent of local talent, including the national champion and two anticipated WIMs from Botswana.
The tournament promises not only fierce competition but also an opportunity for participants to secure the coveted Norms and enhance their global chess ratings.
Simultaneously, the Botswana Women International Open Chess Championship aims to foster an inclusive environment, inviting female chess enthusiasts of all levels to participate.
With prizes ranging from P12000 for the first place in the Elite Tournament to P5000 for the seventh place in the Women’s event, the tournament aspires to promote gender inclusivity and reward the exceptional prowess of its participants.