Nine times champions KCB chess team signs 3 players

By Claire Wanja/Statement

The 3rd round of the Kenya National Chess league action continues this weekend at KCB Sports club.

The Bankers are undefeated so far with two wins ahead of the showdown with Nairobi Gymkhana.

The team has recruited 3 new players this season as they seek to defend the crown they won last year. The three include Kenya’s representative in the Millionaires Chess open William Wachania, Joseph Methu and James Panchol.

KCB Chess team Manager Isaac Babu says the new players are ready to challenge for major trophies this season.

“We are the defending champions and such a task comes with high expectations, that’s why we are recruiting the best players in the region, it’s always a strong team that ends up victorious”, said Babu.

Panchol joins KCB from southern Sudan where he has been selected to represent his country in board one competition in Ethiopia slated to take place on March 25 this year. The player was also crowned the champion during the Nairobi Chess open.

Woman Candidate Master Jumba Gweyani says her career has been remarkable since joining KCB. She represented Kenya in the Chess Olympiad in Azerbaijan last year winning 6 out of 7 rounds. She Played with Uganda, Palestine, Panama, Maldives and Uruguay during the last year’s tournament and she will be representing KCB and Kenya in zone 4.2 in Ethiopia this year alongside team mate William Wachana.

Wachana has been impressive since joining KCB winning the KAM Rapid Chess tournament last month and was part of the KCB team that won the Strathmore teens Rapid.

The squad boasts of talented Martin Gichia, Veteran Philip Singe, Ben Nguku, Rose Wabuti, Jackson Kamau, Ben Magana and Africa Junior Individual Champions Krishi Shah.

Rose Wabuti is among the 2 Women Fide Master in the region alongside Uganda’s Ivy. The national league has 20 matches on the card before the close of the season in October this year, with a major tournament expected to take place in Mombasa this year.