MANILA, Philippines – Filipino Grandmaster (GM) Wesley So aims to score his first full point when he goes up against Indian GM Surya Sekhar Ganguly in the fifth round of the 2011 Tata Steel Corus Group B chess championship in Wijk aan Zee, Netherlands.

So has four consecutive draws against GMs Le Quang Liem of Vietnam (36 moves of Slav defense variation), Gabriel Sargissian of Armenia (26 moves of Scotch defense) Jon Ludvig Hammer of Norway (63 moves of Queen’s Gambit declined), and Zahar Efimenko of Ukraine (46 moves of Bogo-Indian defense).

So, playing under the banner of National Chess Federation of the Philippines (NCFP) President/ Chairman Prospero “Butch” Pichay Jr., tallied 2 points and was tied at 6th to 9th placers in the company of GM’s Friso Nijoboer and Wouter Spoelman of the Netherlands and Radek Wojtaszek of Poland..

“Hope manalo si Wesley sa 5th round,” Pichay said.

GM Luke McShane of England is still on top with 3.5 points following a quick 20-move draw over Nijoboer in their Ruy Lopez skirmish in the B Group of players, 14-player, category-17 tournament, formerly known as Hoogovens.

At 2nd to 5th placers with 2.5 points apiece were GM’s Zahar Efimenko of Russia, Laurant Fressinet of France, David Navara of Czech Republic and Gabriel Sargissian of Armenia. – By Marlon Bernardino