|6||IM||Mas Hafizulhelmi||2377||-||GM||Barbosa Oliver||2585|
|9||Fong Yit San||2002||-||FM||Turqueza Mari Joseph||2273|
|10||Yeoh Li Tian||2204||-||Karunanayake Mayuri||1675|
|11||Fong Yit Ho||2001||-||FM||Yee Soon Wei||2200|
|13||Hj. Azahari Md Nur Arrifin||1986||Zulkipli Zaidan||2066|
|15||Lee William Kah Howe||1777||-||Yap Choow Tun||2028|
|16||Lee Benjamin Kah Teng||0||-||Yussof Pg Abd Rahman||0|
|18||Koh Pokk Huan||0||-||Ding Tze How Dilwen||1739|
After his Round 2 draw with GM Dao, Mas meets GM Barbosa in Round 3. These are the type of pairings that Mas should relish for GM norm opportunities. He should be aiming to remain unbeaten in this sort of field, seeking to win all his games against sub-2400 opponents, plus maybe two or three wins against c.2500 opponents. The Round 2 draw with GM Dao puts Mas on the track, and at least a draw with GM Barbosa would take him further on.
The 2000+ juniors, Li Tian, Yit San & Yit Ho are in Brunei to gain competitive experience against 2200+ opponents, and assess where they stand in an international field. And with thirteen 2300+ players in a field of 40, there are opportunities to play maybe four or more games against much higher rated opponents. These juniors should grab the opportunities and strive to learn from their games against the IMs and GMs, with draws and wins being really a bonus and maybe indicating potential.
Yit San & Yit Ho are paired with significantly higher rated opponents in Round 3 which give them a real test to see where they stand against players with much wider international experience. Li Tian should be expecting to win against his much lower-rated opponent.
U14 juniors, William and Dilwen, are there for the type learning experience that age-group events, even the international ones, do not provide. No matter where they finish up, the experience here will be invaluable.
Benjamin is playing for his initial FIDE rating. So far he has shown good potential and more positive results against rated opponents should see him end up with a higher initial rating.
It is good to see mature players like Zaidan playing outside Malaysia. The bonus here is that the narrow international field provides opportunities to play more games against stronger opposition. Zaidan's performance would provide an indication of the international standing of other mature (non-junior) Malaysian players of his class.
Peter Long has a good report on the first day of competition here, providing us with valuable at-the-scene observations and comments.
Full Round 3 pairings here.
Images from Round 2