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Published On: Wed, Apr 4th, 2018

I trained twice a day to win Gold in Chess -Ikechukwu

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Ikechukwu Michael Osadebe, Chess gold winner at NYG Ilorin last year

By Amaechi Agbo

Rave of the moment 2017 National Youth Game, NYG, Chess Gold medal winner, Ikechukwu Michael Osadebe says the secret of his emerging Chess Gold medalist at the games was down to hard work and training twice a day ahead of the tournament.
Ikechukwu disclosed this in an interview after he was given a scholarship award by the former Inspector General of Police, Mike Okiro during award night organized by the FCT Sport Council to reward its medalists at the 2017 National Youth Games held in Ilorin, Kwara State.
The 13 year old student of Junior Secondary School, Kubwa, won gold and a bronze in the Games.
Speaking during the award night in which he was recognized by the Council with an award for developing the game of Chess in Nigeria, the former IGP said he cherished playing chess and still plays it now during hisliesure and encouraged Ikechukwu to continue to do his best in order to reach his peak and achieve is career objective in sports.
“I played chess in my young days and I still play chess today when I am free. It is the sport that gives me joy. I am impressed with the performance of the chess players in the tournament. I want to appreciate the FCT sports council for finding me worthy of this award. This is an indication that the little things I do are being monitored. I am encouraged to do more.
“I have heard the heroics of the chess players in the Youth Games especially Ikechukwu who won gold. I don’t know him in person, I have never met him but I am glad for his winning gold in chess despite playing against opponents far above him in age. I will encourage him to do more by giving him scholarship. This scholarship will cover his secondary and university education of his choice in Nigeria. Thank you and God bless you,” Mr Okiro said.
Speaking in an exclusive interview, the 13 year old Delta State born chess player said he was elated winning the gold but attributed his prowess to hard work and training twice a day.
“I was happy winning the games despite a lot of things trying to work against me. I was happy and excited winning the gold because I played against players who are not my age. They are very much older than me but I was not intimidated.
“I started by training and adhering to my routine schedule. I trained twice a day – afternoon and night. I trained with my younger brother and during the trainings, we analysed the game by checking errors and blunders. Knowing and checking the right and wrong moves and what we have to play. I also have in mind my new opening repertoire which I took to the tournament and used to defeat everyone.
“During the final, I had a tie with my opponent. He won his matches in the preliminaries by work over so he did not have opponents and did not play a single game till the final. He was winning by work over and I was going to complain but I said no, a real chess player should face his opponents on the board.
“In our first game, we had six-over-six. We went for play over, he won the first game. I took my head down and convinced myself to prepare for the second game. I won the second game and the final game. The first game was somehow so l lost it out of frustration and anger. I said to myself that anger will not let me win the game so I kept my head cool, won the second and last games,” Ikechukwu Osadebe said.
On what tactics his coach told him to employ during the games, Ikechukwu who also had his younger brother, Emmanuel Osadebe in the chess tournament said “My coach told me to try to play my best game at all times, play what I know I can play and not to go beyond our game plan.”
On the issue of the scholarship by the former IGP and Chairman Police Service Commission, Mike Okiro, Ikechukwu was grateful and thanked the former IGP for his kindness. He also expressed his gratitude to the minister of FCT and the FCT director of Sports for their encouragement and support.
“I am happy for the scholarship. I want to thank the Former IGP, Mike Okiro for the scholarship. May God bless him. I also want to thank the Hon. Minister of FCT for hosting the award night for us. I also want to thank our mummy and director of sports, Mrs Dilichukwu Onyedinma for engineering this award night. We love her and promise to do our best for FCT and Nigeria in the next edition of the tournament. I want to say thank you to everyone that helped us achieve what we achieved in Ilorin last year. God bless you all.”
Apart from the scholarship, Ikechukwu Osadebe was also rewarded with N300, 000 cash for winning gold in chess.

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