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BY BERT ELJERA in Las Vegas

Grandmaster Wesley So took the measure of Jeffrey  Xiong of the United States, beating the 13-
year-old American chess phenom in the fourth round of the Millionaire's chess tournament at the
Planet Hollywood Resort & Casino.

Yu Yangyi of China is showing the way with four points and So is tied for second to sixth places,
half a point behind, in the hectic four-day tournament that offers US$100,000 to the champion.

Exploiting Xiong's relative inexperience, the 21-year-old So steered the Indian Game into
unfamiliar lines to win after 44 moves.

    "Wesley has more experience, so we tried to capitalize on that," said Paul Truong,
    who coaches the Webster University NCAA champion team with wife Susan
    Polgar, a former women's world champion.

    Sharing second to sixth places with So is Webster teammate Roby Robson,
    American Alexandr Lenderman, Daniel Naroditsky, also of the U.S. and Ecuadoran
    Carlos Matamoros, who is now based in the U.S.

With the white pieces, So faces Lenderman in the pivotal fifth round Saturday that is expected to
untangle the logjam at the top of the US$1 million tournament, the richest ever in chess history.

The tournament calls for a seven-round Swiss system after which the top four players advance to
the finals on Monday. The finalists play knock-out matches and the winner emerges champion in
the Open section.

"The goal is to get there [the finals]," said Truong. 'We'll take it from there in terms of strategy."

Three other Filipino grandmasters have slim chances of qualifying for the finals, with Julio
Sadorra on three points and Regelio Barcenilla and Ricardo de Guzman at two points each.

The youngest of 32 Open section tournament participants, Xiong drew raves by winning his first
three games, including victories over two high-rated grandmasters.

"This boy and surely will earn his grandmaster's norm very soon," said Truong of Xiong, who is
an international master.
Las Vegas chess: Wesley So gives master class to US phenom
Wesley So (right) catches some serious photo op as China's Yu Yangyi ponders his move. Photo: Paul Truong/Facebook

The goal is to get
there [the
finals]... We'll
take it from there
PAUL TRUONG
NCAA champion coach
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