PMRL Bandara of University of Peradeniya beat the table leader and top rank International Master from India in the final round to share the 1st place of the Sri Lanka Open Chess Championship with IM Sharma, IM Srinath and GC Anuruddha. Young Bandara, who was a clear one point behind Dinesh Sharma, made this wonderful win to reach the Sharma's total of 7½ points, scored by Bandara, Sharma, Anuruddha and Srinath out of possible 9 games. A total sum of Rs. 90,000/= was shared among Dinesh, Anuruddha, Bandara and Srinath. Dinesh won the title while Anuruddha won the Silver medal on the tie breaker. Bandara managed to be the Bronze medalist in the event.
The Sri Lanka Open Chess Championship was conducted by the Chess Federation of Sri Lanka from 6th to 10th March 2009 at the Agriculture In-service Institute, Gannoruwa, Kandy, Sri Lanka. A total of 188 players including International Masters, Dinesh K Sharma and N Srinath of India with FIDE Master Manish from Nepal. Unfortunately, the Sri Lankan top seed, Athula Russell could not participate in the event. All other top national players, GC Anuruddha, TGM Pieris, RMCM Rajapakse, Romesh Weerawardena and Prasannna Kurukulasuriya were in action.
Bandara's performance brought the fortunate to two other players, Anuruddha and IM Srinath, since they were also behind a point to Dineshh when the final round started. Three top players, Romesh Weerawardena, RMCM Rajapakse and Peasanna Kurukulasuriya tied for the 5th place and shared a total sum of 20,000/- among them. Anjana Perera managed to win the best women prize after tying with Ashanthi Rajapaklsha and JMBM Jayasuriya.
Luxman Wijesuriya Hony. Secretary Chess Federation of Sri Lanka