2020-04-06 00:00:01

Student Tomas Laurušas – Winner of Lithuania‘s 1st Chess Match Online

chesslaurusas April 4th, 2020, Mykolas Romeris University (MRU) student Tomas Laurušas made history as the winner of the 1st Lithuanian Chess Championship (Žaibas) online. There were 158 chess players that participated in the championship.

“It’s great that even during the quarantine period chess is not forgotten and allows us to continue to improve. This quarantine period allows many chess players to spend more time honing their skills and I sincerely believe that it will only strengthen me,” said the chess champion sharing his impressions. He said the tournament was truly extraordinary and that he came away with many a fond memory.

Although many sporting events now have been cancelled or postponed due to the quarantine, chess is an exception. Among those participating in the online championship were many winners of national and international competitions (3 Master’s, 7 international masters, 2 international masters) and many capable, talented Lithuanian players. In a special Lithuanian chan-nel devoted to chess there was a direct broadcast of the championship. The famous sports journalist Romanas Buršteinas commented the championship match and occasionally there were Seimas members – Julius Sabatauskas and chess Master Seimas member Viktorija Čmilytė.

It was great to find an alternative to continuing sports as the COVID-19 virus epidemic con-tinues, said tournament organizer Andrius Paulauskas. The Internet has become the only place where chess players can compete. It appears to me that Lithuanians have become the first in Europe to organize an official chess championship match online. We are behind only the Egyptians, but they started their championship on Friday and will continue in several stages, said organizer Paulauskas.

Champion Tomas Laurušas collected 11,5 points from 13 possible.  Second place went to V. Ka-zakovskis who collected 11 points and bronze went to Rokas Klabis, who had 10 points.

Among women the strongest was MRU alum Deimantė Daulytė – Cornette who collected 9 points. She was awarded the Julius Sabatauskas Cup. Playing with her newborn child on her arms, she remained triumphant although there was strong competition among women players.

Speaking of the unique tournament, chess champion Laurušas said,“I am very grateful to the or-ganizers for such an event.”