Chess MVP learns discipline from the sport
THE University of Santo Tomas men’s chess team triumphed in the recent UAAP season 75 despite ranking second in the standings after the round-robin. The Tiger Woodpushers emerged victorious after defeating six-peat titlist and defending champion, the Far Eastern University men’s chess team.
Contributing to the win is UAAP Season 75 men’s chess tournament Most Valuable Player, Timothy John So Kua, a finance student from the College of Commerce and Business Administration. He started playing the sport when he was in grade four, teaching himself and learning from people playing on the streets.
With the MVP title as his best achievement so far, his parents and coach are his backbone in every game, teaching him to give his full effort and to honor God. Success is defined when you feel happiness in your life, he shared with TomasinoWeb.
What is chess to you?
Yung chess, ang laking natulong sa buhay ko simula high school, kasi may financial problem kami. Nung nagtry out ako sa chess team sa Adamson, nakuha ako at naging scholar kaya kahit papano nabasawan yung financial expenses.
Is it hard to be a chess player given that it is a mind-game?
Hindi mahirap kung gugustuhin mo lang talaga siya; kailangan lang ng focus para gumaling.
What are your thoughts during a game? How do you motivate yourself?
Gusto naming mag-champion, matagal nang champion ang FEU kaya gusto namin silang pigilan. ‘Yun ang palagi naming motivation.
Who was your best opponent?
Nung bata ako, nakalaban ko si Eugene Torre pero talo ako sa kanya. Natatakot pa ako noon. Top one player siya dati.
Who else do you want to fight?
Si Wesley So, ‘yung top one player ngayon sa Pilipinas.
What life lessons did you learn from chess?
Discipline. Nung bata ako, makulit ako sobra, tapos natuto akong mag-chess, natuto akong idisiplina ang sarili ko, kasi kailangan tahimik tapos naka-upo ka lang.
Can we expect another championship next season?
Kaya ‘yan basta may discipline lahat.
The women’s chess team are seeded lower in the ranking, what can the men’s team share to them?
Palagi lang dapat maglaro at ma-expose sa tournament.
Timothy and the rest of the Male Woodpushers have finally brought back the crown to the walls of España with their strong discipline, ending 11 years of championship drought. Indeed, their patience has finally paid off. As for Timothy, who has three more years in the team, he will now lead their campaign for another chase in the title carrying all the lessons and experiences he learned from season 75.
By Karl Cedrick G. Basco and Allen Joseph Baluyot
Photo taken by Jenzine Inah M. Alcantara