Grandmaster Jeffery Xiong is ranked 43rd in the world by the International Chess Federation (FIDE). On May 20, 2023, Xiong played two rounds in the Coppell Chess Club First Year Anniversary Grand Celebration.
Also competing were Grandmaster Rahul Srivasthav Peddi and International Master Zura Javakhadze. They tied for second and third places in the four-round tournament’s open section. FIDE Master Sharvesh Deviprasath won first place.
Coppell Chess Club Competitors
Wayne Xiong, Jeffery’s father, said that the Xiong family lives within a 10-minute drive of the Coppell Chess Club. Jeffery played a couple rounds at the Coppell Chess Club First Year Anniversary Grand Celebration. He also posed for photos with chess fans.
Grandmaster Rahul Srivasthav Peddi is from southern India and became India’s 74th grandmaster in the summer of 2022. In the summer of 2023, Peddi is staying with family friends in Highland Village, Texas. Peddi will begin his junior year at The University of Texas at Dallas (UT Dallas) this fall.
International Master Zura Javakhadze has all three norms required to become a grandmaster. If he raises his FIDE rating over 2500, FIDE will award Javakhadze the grandmaster title. Javakhadze graduated from UT Dallas and works as an executive at WFT Logistics in Frisco, Texas.
FIDE Master Sharvesh Deviprasath was the 2022 Texas State Chess Champion. He is also the 2023 National High School Co-Champion. Deviprasath will be a senior at Coppell High School this fall.
Also competing in the Coppell Chess Club First Year Anniversary Grand Celebration was the 2023 National Middle School Champion Eric Liu. After Liu and I took first-round half-point byes, we were paired in round 2.
Before our game, I asked Liu if we had played before. Liu replied, “I don’t think so.” It was only after the game began that I realized Liu looked familiar because I had interviewed him a month earlier. Then I realized that I was playing the National Middle School Champion!
In our game, Liu has White and an extra pawn in the diagrammed position. The time control was game in 60 minutes with a 5-second delay. By the time we reached the diagrammed position, Liu had less than three minutes and I had 20 minutes. I blundered in his time trouble, moving quickly rather than taking my time.
In round 3, I played another competitor from the National Middle School Championship, Nethra Vinayagaram. Vinayagaram remembered my presentation at the National Middle School Girls Club Room. Since she looked up to me, I felt pressure to win our game. Luckily, I found a tactic to win a pawn.
In round 4, I played a Coppell High School student, Aniruddha Kumar, and drew. Kumar was Deviprasath’s teammate at the National High School Championship, where their two-person Coppell High School team took 30th place in the championship section. Teams were ranked based on their top four players’ scores, so the Coppell High School team was at a disadvantage with only two players in the championship section. Other Coppell High School students competed in the unrated, under 800, and under 1600 sections.
Cake and Chess
Before round 2, a celebratory cake was cut to celebrate the one-year anniversary of the Coppell Chess Club. Competitors got their choice of cake slices or individual parfaits.
The Coppell Chess Club provides chess sets, boards, and clocks. The club has multiple rooms, so classes and analysis are separated from tournament games. There are even spaces set aside for parents waiting for their children’s games to finish. I enjoyed my visit to Coppell Chess Club, and I plan to return for its upcoming tournaments.