After battling it out over 3 days and 3 nights in Seri Iskandar, with each contenders fought it out over eight games each with alternate colour, Nabil Azman Hisham has today been been proclaimed a winner hence the rightful owner to be the Crown Prince of Malaysian chess.
His road to the title is not easy. For a start he is not the hot favourite to win the title (he is seeded number 3) with his main challengers are NM Timothy Capel, who once a King (National Master) of Malaysian chess, Sumant (King of the Hill), Mark Siew (The most improved youngster) but slowly and surely he overcome all the obstacles to ensure the crown is his by winning a remarkable 6 games and drawing 2.
Nabil born in a truly chess family. All members of the Azman Hisham and Zazaloma’s family not only played chess, they eat, sleep and breath chess! Very good chances if their cat, should they have one, is also able to play a fighting chess. Once, last year if i am not mistaken, they have entered one chess team tournament and fielded all their family member in a team. No import player. Result? First placelah what else...Well, a usual sight in local chess tournament...Azman Hisham’s clan will sapu most of the prizes. :)
I have the opportunity of playing against Nabil two (or is it 3) times. Nabil won all. In all the games I had the advantage white pieces, inviting Nabil for a fist fight in Smith Morra Sicilian. He politely declined the pawn in the opening and impolitely beat me to death in the endgame. Having playing against him and on many occasions, watching him played i could safely said that Nabil is one tough and tricky opponent. On many occasion he will repeat his moves and just when his opponent expect he wants a draw he make another moves avoiding repetition! Upsetting and frustrating his opponent and without doubt gaining precious seconds on the clock!
In last year National Closed (best remembered for last game battle between Farouqi and Tan Khai Boon), Nabil is actually the leader for most part of the tournament. In round 8, he faced Tan Khai Boon and around move 25 TKB got only 3 minutes left but Nabil failed to capitalize on it and lost...and the rest is history.
This year and in a few days time he will again took part in National Closed. Wearing his new and shining crown he will be a scary opponent to face across the board.
Good luck to you Nabil in this coming National Closed