Isuru Alahakoon, the coach and two of his students, Nabil Nazar Mohamed and Brijeash Saravanabhavan of Gateway College excelled at the Sri Lanka National (Premier Division) Chess Championships 2022. Having worked together as a team, the trio made their mark at a time when the championship had reached an important milestone of celebrating its golden jubilee.
Veteran, four times National Chess Champion, Isuru Alahakoon who is the senior coach of Gateway had a good performance to score 8 points and placed 2nd according to the tie breaker. Isuru beat SMHD Sathkumara, Marlon Fernando, Malith Madusanka, S Sivathanujan, Osheen De Silva, KGSTD Kiriella and Lisara tennakoon, drew with Chandana Wijekoon and Dhanushka Bandara with only lost to the winner SDBK Senevirathne to score 8 points.
Nabil Nazar Mohamed of Gateway College beat Induwara Wijewickrama, Chamin Vithanage, OLB Yatawara, RMISA Rathnayake, Achintha Shamain Kaluarachchi, Sithija Lahiru and SDBK Senevirathne, drew with B Janukshan and Brijeash Saravanabhavan to reach 8 points and 3rd place on the tie breaker. Brijeash Saravanabhawan of Gateway College also made his best performance in an event so far to tie for the 1st place but had to be satisfied with the 4th place according to the tie breaker. He beat Vinsith Perera, Ramiru Gunawardena, Yasantha Jayaweera, Kevin Ranindu Silva, NPG Sithija Lahiru, MN Abdul Basith and Elath Mathanga De Silva, drew with Lisara Tennakkon and Nabil Nazar Mohamed with only one lost to Chandana Wijekoon.
With a better tiebreaker, SDBK Seneviratne was declared as the overall winner. All four players shared the total cash award of Rs. 140,000/- as Rs. 35,000/= per each player. The trio attributes their success to the continued online training they had throughout the pandemic along with their colleagues at Gateway College. They are now within the top 14 chess players of the country and will play in the Sri Lanka National Chess Championships 2022 – Finals.