The National Inter-State Team Championship 2013 starts today at Kota Kinabalu, Sabah. 10 states are represented with Sabah fielding 4 teams, Kelantan 2 teams and 1 team each by the other 8 states.
Selangor is top seed and the clear favourite with a strong line-up of Nicholas Chan, Yeoh Li Tian, Sumant Subramaniam and Roshan Ajeet Singh. Home state Sabah, Kuala Lumpur, Perak, Terengganu and Johor have also put up strong teams and are contenders for the top 3 places. Kelantan, Pahang, Negeri Sembilan and Sarawak make up the rest of the field.
Perak is second-seeded based on FIDE Rapid Ratings followed by MCF Ratings. Fadzil Nayan on first board followed by Yit San, Yit Ho and Syamaizar Lup, is the best available Perak team.
A total of seven rounds are scheduled with three each today and tomorrow, and the final round on Saturday morning. No doubt the teams will be going all-out to win the main prize of RM3000. No less attractive is a first option given to the champion state, to be Malaysia's official representative to the Asian Cities Team Championship in Manila next month.
The team list is now up at chess-results.com.
This event is certainly a welcome return to the Malaysian chess calendar after a lapse of 15 years. The last similar event was held during the 1998 Merdeka Chess Festival.