By KRISTEL SATUMBAGA
The Philippine men’s team bounced back from a crushing defeat with a 3-1 demolition of Cyprus while its women’s counterpart yielded to Serbia, 2.5-1.5, after three rounds in the 44th world Chess Olympiad in Chennai, India Sunday night.
Grandmasters Banjo Barcenilla, John Paul Gomez and Darwin Laylo provided the victories while Mark Paragua was the lone casualty as the men’s crew improved to four match points at 32nd place following a second-round loss to Azerbaijan Saturday.
Barcenilla whipped Alexandros Isaakidis, Gomez downed Ioannis Damianou, and Laylo toppled Michalis Florentiades on boards two to four, while Paragua bowed to FIDE Master Konstantinos Michaelides on board one.
Meanwhile, the women’s team suffered its first defeat at the hands of Serbia with Woman Grandmaster Janelle Mae Frayna and Woman International Masters Jan Jodilyn Fronda and Kylen Joy Mordido settling for draws against WGM Teodora Injac, WGM Jovana Eric and WIM Marina Gajcin.
Woman FIDE Master Shania Mendoza, for her part, suffered a beating at the hands of WIM Adela Velikic on board three, giving the Serbians the victory.
With the defeat, the Filipinas skidded to 37th place with four match points.
Up next for the women’s team will be Angola, which blanked Barbados, 4-0, while the men’s squad will face Monaco, a 3-1 winner over Liberia.