HCM CITY (VNS)– Defending champion Nguyen Thi Thanh An of HCM City had a good start at the national tournament for the country's top chess players, with a victory over Le Thi Ha of Hai Phong in the first round of the women's event yesterday in HCM City.
Other top Vietnamese players secured their first wins. Hoang Thi Bao Tram of Ha Noi, who finished second last year, overcame Nguyen Hoang Anh of HCM City. Le Kieu Thien Kim of HCM City, who joined the Vietnamese women's team to compete at the Istanbul 2012 World Chess Olympiad, easily beat Nguyen Thi Hanh, representing the Military team.
The men's event saw the absence of four top players, including international grandmaster Le Quang Liem and Nguyen Ngoc Truong Son.
Nguyen Van Huy of Ha Noi and Cao Sang of Lam Dong, who finished first and second in the previous tournament, both recorded wins.
The tournament, played over nine rounds in the Swiss system, will wrap up next Wednesday. – VNS