Mighty Mok celebrates Christmas and New Year with back to back tourney wins!
Just a week ago, during a Whatsapp conversation with Malaysian IM Mok Tze Meng, the full time chess coach (as well as 'chapalang' financial adviser, mobile chess book/equipment seller, chess arbiter, intrepid deal-maker and prankster) mused that he might consider ending his playing career to concentrate on work.
IM Mok Tze Meng (left) messing about with Dr J Nithiananathan when the latter swung by Kuala Lumpur (Malaysia) last year
However, the chess itch got to him as he felt that he still got something to prove to his detractors (that he was still the same force who overpowered GMs Van Wely and Amin in the 2012 Istanbul Olympiad). In a 62-strong Tesco Setia Alam field comprising 2014 Tromso Olympiad representatives Sumant Subramaniam and Fong Yit San, Mok set out to prove that he can still rack up the titles at 46 years of age.
With 5/6 heading into the final round, Mok was paired against Sumant who had a perfect 6/6 score.
Hence, with this win, Mok tied with Sumant for the top spot with 6/7 and clinched the RM 200 + Tesco RM 500 voucher first prize on tie-break.
Just to prove that the Tesco result wasn't a fluke, Mok entered the next tourney on the circuit, the Kastam Open. This time, he led from start to finish and by Round 6, was a point clear of the field. A draw with Black against Kamaluddin Yusof sufficed to give him clear 1st place as well as the RM500 first prize. In the penultimate round, Mok was paired with the ex-Malaysian International, Mohd Kamal Abdullah. Even though Mok (with 5/5) was leading Kamal by 1/2 point with another 8 players at 4/5, he dispelled any thoughts of a safe draw to keep his lead. 'First place was not guaranteed yet so I played for the kill', he recounted and added 'if you want to be champion, you must never look back'.