“I WAS 10 SECONDS DOWN … SHE MADE AN ILLEGAL MOVE AND SHE LOST” – ABH CHESS CHAMPION
– Titus Adekunle, ABH PRESS
From UI’s Queen of Chess, Titus Adeolu Adekunle of the Alexander Brown Hall Press Organisation takes a biopsy to reveal slides of Maduka Millicent Magdalene’s chess life and a peek at the ABH chess family.
ABHPO: Hello Miss Maduka, can we meet you?
Millicent: Hi. My name is Millicent Maduka Magdalene. I’m a 400/500L student of Medicine & Surgery. I’m from Delta state and I’m a Chess addict.
ABHPO: Chess addict, like you get a panic attack if you don’t play? Cool.
When did you start playing chess?
Millicent: Nah, more like I can’t concentrate on anything until I play chess. I started playing chess about 1year 4 months ago
ABHPO: I anticipated a longer experience. How did you learn and master in such a short time?
Millicent: I’m still a very very very long way from mastering the game.
Millicent: But basically I practiced everyday when I started learning how to play.
ABHPO: But I believe you have some track records already. What platforms have you also participated?
Millicent: I guess so. I’ve participated mainly in tournaments within UI campus, that is the inter faculty and interhall games.
ABHPO: So you have represented Clinical Sciences and ABH?
Millicent: Yes, I have
ABHPO: How well would you say you have learnt the game and any prizes yet?
Millicent: I believe I’ve learnt enough to be an average chess player and as for prizes, I’ve gotten;
Bronze at the last interfaculty games on my board, Gold at the last interhall games on my board, Best female blitz player at the last interhall games
Winner of the female chess at the Christopher Osunbote games
ABHPO: Some blazing accolades here ma’am! What does the chess family in ABH feel and look like?
Millicent: [Chuckles] Thanks. The chess family in ABH is made up of diverse individuals from all faculties who like to rumble in the jungle. They’re fun and awesome people who are passionate about the Grand Game of Chess. Imagine the house in the village when everyone comes back for the festive season, that’s how the chess family feels when we gather to play
ABHPO: It sure looks like something to be a part of. Does the clique have a structural system (with a lead, training plans) or just a group of friends?
Millicent: Definitely. You should try learning the game and join us. No, not really (We do not really have a structure). We’re just a group of friends who meet to play, though we have a WhatsApp platform
ABHPO: Oh, great!
But your usual joint is now being taken by snooker players waiting for their turn. Any reason for the decline in activity?
Millicent: I guessed this question would come up but I can’t answer it properly because I don’t really know the reason either.
ABHPO: Oh well. You should bring it up. What would you say was you proudest moment as a chess player?
Millicent: My proudest moment as a chess player was also my most terrifying moment. It was the moment I won the game that made me the best female at blitz in the last interhall chess tournament
ABHPO: Mind to share? Why were you terrified?
Millicent: We had both played severely games which ended in a draw so it was time to move on to sudden death. I picked white and she picked black.
As white, I had 5mins on my clock and as black she had 4mins on her clock but the catch was, I had to win the game either by a checkmate or on time while she could either draw the game or win and it would be counted as a win in her favour.
While the game was on, I thought I was going to lose because I was down to 10secs left on my time and she was about to promote a pawn into a Queen when it all happened.
She made an illegal move and lost. I still get shivers when I remember that game
ABHPO: Oh wow. I can only imagine. Any bad or awkward moment?
Millicent: That would be when I started learning how to play the game. There was a night I was playing in Abh, I had played about 20 games that night and I lost all of them. I was so engrossed in trying to win a game that I didn’t take note of the time. I stopped playing about 1AM
ABHPO: How much relevance do you think the game has given you and how much have you gained?
Millicent: The game has helped to think more on my actions. In chess every move you make has a consequence so you have to think carefully about it a d I try to apply that principle also to myself everyday. Plus the game has given me the chance to meet people who don’t just stay alive but actually live their lives
What qualities would you recommend for people like me who could someday learn chess? What virtues helped you?
Millicent: Patience, humility and dedication. Patience to learn the moves, tactics and strategies. Humility to accept defeats because there would be many of them while starting. Dedication because it could get tedious along the way. But most of all, you need Passion for the game to tie it all up
ABH PO: Thank you for your time.. anything you’d like to add?
Millicent: Thank you. I would just like to urge people especially females to try to learn to play the game.