Rodwell Makoto's remarkable year

HARARE - International Chess Master (IM) Robert Gwaze’s dominance in Zimbabwe is, for the first time in a long while, under serious threat from compatriot Rodwell Makoto.

Makoto, who is currently a FIDE Master, has in the past played second fiddle to his countryman Gwaze but his performance last year showed that he is a rising force in local chess.

Makoto won gold in the Capablanca chess festival in South Africa in May before coming first in the South Africa Open tournament, beating grand masters from China and France.

To add to his impressive feats, he finished first at the Kwazulu Natal Spring championships in August.

Makoto then signed off the year by finishing in position 18 in the 40th Olympiad chess tournament in Turkey.

The 25-year-old walked away with R18 000 for winning the South African Open tournament.

Makoto won on tiebreak ahead of two other players who all scored 9 points after 11 rounds.

He won the tournament with superior tiebreaks over International Master Johannes Mabusela as well as Grand Master Ahmed Adly and Daniel Cawdery.

The tournament, which had a prize purse of R100 000, attracted 326 entries with the majority of the players coming from South Africa, while the rest were from Mozambique, Botswana, Zambia, Switzerland, Angola, Iraq, Egypt, Malawi, France and Portugal.

This was the biggest victory for the Zimbabwean Master since his breakout performance in the 2011 African Championships.

However, at the Zimbabwe Open, Makoto failed to cap a fine year after he finished third with eight points.

“I believe the whole of Zimbabwe should rally behind him to ensure Makoto continues to scale the dizzy heights his enormous talent deserves.

The benefits to the country are immense,” Zimbabwe Chess Federation secretary-general Elton Mangarai told the Daily News on Sunday.

“His success will inspire other youths.”

Comments (1)

RODWELL, an interesting name of Anglo-Saxon origin, is a locational surname deriving from any one of various places in Bedfordshire, Hertfordshire, and Kent, England. Rodwell is mostly used as a surname. Notable people with such include: * Cecil Hunter-Rodwell, British colonial administrator and Governor * Crispin Rodwell, British-born photographer and writer * Jack Rodwell, English soccer footballer * James Rodwell English rugby union sevens player * Warren Rodwell, Australian former soldier, university teacher, hostage survivor & songwriter * Warwick Rodwell, English author, archaeologist, architectural historian and academic FIRST NAME : Lady Clarissa Rodwell was the wife of Cecil Hunter-Rodwell, Governor of the then Southern Rhodesia (1928–1933). In 1932, Lady Rodwell Maternity Hospital located in Bulawayo, Zimbabwe was named after her. Births at this hospital could explain the use of Rodwell as a male first name. For example: Rodwell Ferguson, Belizean politician Rodwell Makoto, Zimbabwean chess international Master. Rodwell Munyenyembe, Malawi politician Rodwell Paul, American veteran pilot captain Rodwell Williams, Belizean lawyer Rodwell Ngara, Zimbabwean diamond sawyer

Lady Rodwell - 17 November 2015

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