Success in Pan-American Youth

More success for members of the Young Stars program, as well as for youth U.S. Chess overall! This time many medals were achieved in the Pan-American Youth Festival, which was held in the city of Cali, Colombia.


The playing hall in Cali

The event gathers the strongest players from each country in the Americas, representing them in 12 categories: u8, u10, u12, u14, u16 and u18 in both open and girl’s sections. Despite some minor complaints about organization overall, some dubious officiating, and relatively poor playing conditions (the sports arena where the tournament was held would sometimes reach above 90 degrees!), the players and coaches from the U.S. gave a generally positive feedback of the tournament.

The results from the U.S. team were outstanding: a fabulous ten medals:


Fresh of winning the Girl’s Invitational u20 in Tulsa, Young Stars members Ashritha Eswaran conquered a bronze medal in Cali for the u18 Pan-American. She tied for first, but the mathematical tiebreak system put her on third.

Ariah Leib Shlionsky Under 8 Open (gold)
Maya Behura in the Under 8 Girls (gold)
Aksithi Eswaran in the Under 10 Girls (gold)
Sanjana Vittal in the Under 12 Girls (gold)
Marcus M Miyasaka in the Under 14 Open (gold)
Anh Nguyen in the Under 10 Girls (silver)
Atreya Vaidya  in the Under 10 Open (silver)
Agata Bykovtsev in the Girls Under 16 (silver)
Zhao Chenyi in the Girls Under 12 (bronze)
Ashritha Eswaran in the Girls Under 18 (bronze)


Aksithi Eswaran is following well on her sister’s footsteps! She was ruthless in Colombia, scoring a perfect 9.0/9.


The coaching staff was comprised of FST Armen Abartsoumian, KCF President and Senior Trainer Michael Khodarkovsky, and the head of delegation Aviv Friedman. Also helping the U.S. Team was GM Dejan Bojkov, who went as the coach of the Eswaran sisters and Chenyi Zhao.


Aksithi Eswaran, Dejan Bojkov, Ashritha Eswaran and Chenyi Zhao, who also got bronze.

You can read the impressions from Cali by the head of delegation, Aviv Friedman, on

Also Dejan Bojkov has done an extensive photo-report on the chess news portal,

Photos by Aleksey Pershin

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