Meet Woman FIDE Master Sasha Mongeli

Sasha Mongeli attained the Woman FIDE Master title due to her good results at the 2018 Chess Olympiad in Batumi. As a debutant, she put in a commanding performance and won 7 of her 8 games to end with a score of 7/8. To top it all, Star Times crowned her the sports personality for the month for October 2018.

At position 84, You Hifan of China is the only female chess player making it into the world’s top 100. Kenya is doing slightly better with Joyce Nyaruai Ndirangu and Lucy Wanjiru on positions 76 and 94 respectively. Attracting and retaining women to the game of chess will certainly improve these rankings. Sasha’s quick rise to the top should inspire many young girls!

In round 11 of the 43 Chess Olympiad Sasha Mongeli was playing on board 4 against Yaribeth Gonzalez of Panama. Her opponent was higher-rated, but Sasha had the advantage of the White pieces and got to play her favorite Scotch Game. Pour yourself a Scotch as we take a look at that final game.

Black avoided the tactical complications of the Scotch opening but appeared to lose her way in the middle game. White appeared more comfortable with the position and gained the Bishop pair on move 19 with a simple tactic. Black’s position deteriorated with some inaccurate moves and White took full advantage in winning the game.

Women’s chess still appears to be at a different level. Games are dominated by quick piece exchanges and tactical trickery rather than positional play and strategy. More players and playing against male opposition might begin to address these issues.

That’s all for today, ladies and gentlemen. Stay on top of COVID-19 by following the WHO Guidelines and keep storming the FIDE rankings like Sasha Mongeli with your favorite Scotch!

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