The 5th and last update from Ritika on her participation in the 2014 World Youth Chess Championship:

By Ritika Pandey

Day 11 – Today I played a girl from Germany. She played the Queen’s Gambit, so she obtained a very slightly better position. She outplayed me in a long 4 hours, and eventually I lost.

Day 12 – My opponent was from Chinese Taipei (Taiwan). She played in the 41st Olympiad for her country. I outplayed her in the transposition from the middle game and end game. After a tedious 4 hours, I won the game.

Day 13 – In my final round I played a girl from India. She had a slightly better position in the middle game, but after we exchanged queens, I had a better position. But after the rooks were exchanged, it was a drawn pawn endgame. After the final round I went with my friends to the beach, after creating a failed sand castle, we washed off and rented karts. Karts are bikes with a steering wheel instead of a handle, and a hand brake like a car, instead of small brakes by the handles. All of us got our own karts, and we drove around beach. After an hour, my family and I got ready to go to the Closing Ceremony. After reaching the ICC,  I spotted the US team sitting on the other side of the auditorium. My friend and I moved there and found a bunch of my friends clumped together. We chatted for a bit, until the speeches started. The most memorable quote to me was,”You came here as ambassadors for your country. Now you are going back as ambassadors of South Africa.”  After that the prizes of the Durban Open, a tournament going on alongside the World Youth, were being handed out. My sister played and won second place Under 16. She won 2000 rands (about $200), and I was proud of her. In my section, a girl from the United States, Jennifer Yu, won the gold medal in the Girls U12 in the World Youth Chess Championships 2014.

The World Youth Chess Championships was a great experience. After all, during these couple weeks, the world became smaller for me. Not only have I made friends from all over the world, I also learned about the Zulu and wildlife of South Africa. After this, I am going to Cape Town. We will see Rubben Island, where Nelson Mandela was imprisoned, African penguins, and Tabletop Mountain. I did fine for my first World Youth and I hope to go next year!


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