|Launch of the Cayman Islands Chess Federation|
|Monday, 01 April 2019 11:05|
The Cayman Islands has formed a national Chess Federation (the “Cayman Islands Chess Federation”) and has applied to join FIDE with a view to competing in the Chess Olympiad in 2020.
The launch of the Cayman Islands Chess Federation was marked by the Cayman Islands’ first international match, against St Lucia, held during the visit of FIDE Vice-President Nigel Short MBE.
VP Short’s visit on 14-17 March 2019 was the final leg of his FIDE expansion tour of the Caribbean, which has seen the emergence of five new national federations all seeking to join FIDE.
Together with the leaders of CICF, VP Short met with the Governor, the Minister of Education and other government officials to promote the Islands’ nascent chess in schools programme which requires government funding in order to be sustainable over the long term. VP Short also inspired students during a visit to the chess club at John Gray High School.
VP Short was the guest of honour at the Cayman v St Lucia match, which was won 15-3 by St Lucia. At the conclusion of the event, CICF President, Shaun Tracey, presented VP Short with the CICF’s application to join FIDE, to rounds of applause from the local chess community.
The Cayman Islands is a British Overseas Territory situated near Jamaica and Cuba in the Caribbean Sea. The Islands consist of Grand Cayman, Cayman Brac and Little Cayman. Organised chess began in 2014, and a chess in schools programme was introduced in all public schools in 2017, led by WIM Anzel Laubscher as national chess coach. The schools programme was made possible due to the sponsorship of more than 20 local businesses, including major sponsors BDO, Ogier and Dart/Minds Inspired, who were delighted to participate in fundraising simuls given by leading grandmasters Nigel Short (2017) and Hou Yifan (2018).
FIDE Vice-President Nigel Short MBE meeting with the Governor of the Cayman Islands, Martyn Roper OBE, the Minister of Education, Hon. Juliana O’Connor Connolly JP MLA, Mrs Barbara Connolly MLA, Mr Joel Francis and representatives of the Cayman Islands Chess Federation.
Presentation of the Cayman Islands Chess Federation’s application to join FIDE (left to right):
Carlo Lee (Development Officer), Shaun Tracey (President), VP Short, and Malcolm Powell (Secretary).
VP Short teaching students at John Gray High School, Cayman Islands.
VP Short with members of the Cayman Chess Club