By ADRIAN STEWART CO
Iloilo Kisela Knights settled for a runner up finish in the Professional Chess Association of the Philippines (PCAP) San Miguel Corporation-Ayala Land Cup after bowing to San Juan Predators in the finals last Saturday, November 27.
The Iloilo City-based woodpushers were caught flatfooted in the opening leg of the two-leg finale with the Predators running away with a massive 19-2 victory in blitz and rapid game.
The Kisela Knights, however, showed some fight in the second set but the Predators displayed its determination to score a close 11.5-9.5 victory and wrapped up its first-ever PCAP title.
The outcome was a reversal of the second conference where the Kisela Knights defeated Predators in the finals and in the first conference where the Iloilo edged San Juan in the bronze medal match.
“Hats off to San Juan Predators, they got the better of us this time,” said Kisela Knights head coach Hubert Canto. “Our players did their best but I guess the championship is not really for us but I am proud of our showing.”
Overall, the Kisela Knights could be considered the winningest in PCAP’s first season with a championship in the second conference, runner-up in the third and third place finish in the first conference.
The Kisela Knights also took home a runner-up finish in the PCAP San Miguel Corporation-Ayala Land Cup side event Tag Team last Tuesday just before the playoffs round.
“I want to congratulate our players for a stunning performance in the first season of PCAP,” said Kisela Knights team owner Leo Sotaridona. “This is something that we can build on heading into the second season.”
Caloocan Loadmanna Knights, on the other hand, captured the third place finish in the PCAP San Miguel Corporation-Ayala Land Cup after a 14-6 domination over Penang of Malaysia.
Meanwhile, the second season of the PCAP tournament is being targeted to open by mid-January 2022, the PCAP management announced after the Kisela Knights-Predators finale./ASC, WDJ