EXPRESS REPORT: Ten chess players are competing in the zone 2 trials with 4 officials working to see that the best chess player emerge in this 5 round Swiss tournament. The chessplayers present in Houston for the event are Toyin Gbenle, Kenneth Odeh, Yomi Odutola, NM George Umezinwa, IM Oladapo Adu, Ayo Oguntuase, Okechukwu Iwu, Sylvester Smarty, Ayokunle Aladeselu and Ola Osanyinjobi. Four of the expected players could not make it due to unforeseeable circumstances.
The Chief Tournament Director is Franc Guadalupe - US Tournament director. Franc is an experience arbiter who has officiated in many US tournaments including the US Opens. He is assisted by Quayle Johnson, a delegate member of the US Chess Federation and a member of the Houston Chess Club. Coordinating the event are Dr Jide Falana and Adekunle Elegbede. The tournament is going to be US Chess Federation and World Chess Federation (FIDE) rated.
So far, this Olympiad trial has lived up to its expectations. The highlight of the first round was the game between the 1992 Olympiad veteran Kenneth Odeh and George Umezinwa, a past winner of the US World Opens. George won this game even though Kenneth put on tremendous pressure on George throughout the game. Another interesting game was between Dr Okechuhwu Iwu and Aladeselu Ayokunle. This was very explosive and nerve wrecking to say the least.
Detail analysis of the games is underway. You can also see them on the Chess drum.