PORT ELIZABETH – Thirteen year-old Charlize Van Zyl is making all the right moves. Van Zyl is currently the youngest South African to win a World Chess Federation title.
She won the title in Botswana last week and was competing against opponents twice her age.
“It was nice in front of all the adults you know everyone was watching and then walking away with the trophy it’s a good feeling when everyone is watching,” said Van Zyl.
The youngster took the gap when some of the ladies in the South African team withdrew at the last minute.
“We sent a couple of second stringers, our usual ladies team withdrew or were not available so we decided to send three younger players just to go and experience and she came and won the tournament it was amazing,” said Marius Van Zyl of Chess South Africa.
Van Zyl fell in love with chess when she was eight years old.
She was taught the game by her father who is vice president of Chess SA.
The champion hopes to win more international titles and further elevate her status in the game.
“Grand master title is like the highest title you can get in chess and then the women version of the title is just below the normal title so I want to become a Woman Grandmaster in the next two years,” said Van Zyl.
After high school she hopes to go overseas and compete in other international tournaments.
Van Zyl’s life is not mainly focused on chess, she also hopes to study journalism or psychology in the future.
Article source: http://www.enca.com/south-africa-world-life/chess-champion-move