16 year old Ieong from Macau

Ieon Seak Hin is a 16 year old player from Macau. He is playing board 3 with a rating of 1841 after having competed in the World Youth U16 Olympiad in Slovakia in July. He is currently the top U16 player in Macau and ranked number 19 in his country.


Macau is an autonomous region on the south coast of China, across the Pearl River Delta from Hong Kong. With an estimated population of around 652,500 living in an area of 30.5 km2 (11.8 sq mi), it is the most densely populated region in the world.


We find Ieong in the lobby of his hotel busily preparing for his game against Trinidad & Tobago later that afternoon. He apologizes before hand for his level of English, but we remind him that his English is still much better than our Chinese! Again with the help of Google Translate we start our interview.



Chesslife: How old were you when you started playing chess?
Ieong: I started when I was 4 years old. My grandfather taught me the rules. I then continued playing chess at school. I also know how to play chinese chess.

Chesslife: How much chess do you study per week?
Ieong: I study approximately 2 hours, twice a week, so 4 hours in total. I also use a chinese website {ourgame.com} to practise chess on.

Chesslife: What is your favourite chess book?
Ieong: I love reviewing openings from Encyclopedia’s.



Chesslife: Is this your first Olympiad and what was your first International Tournament?
Ieong: This is my first Olympiad and my first international tournament was in 2008 for the World Youth Championships in Vietnam.

Chesslife: Who is your favourite player?
Ieong: I love Magnus Carlsen’s game style, but I also really like Hou Yifan. She was the first Chinese player I knew.

World Women’s Champion GM Hou Yifan

Chesslife: What is the Junior Chess League like in Macau?
Ieong: It is very small, but growing.

Chesslife: What has chess taught you?
Ieong: It has taught me how to think. It has also improved my school subjects like mathematics.

Chesslife: How would you describe your game style?
Ieong: I love to attack in my big games. If I can find a chance to attack, I will. I especially like to attack Kings side. I am more of a positional with White. For Black I am currently studying the Dragon variation.


Chesslife: What is your most memorable game?
Ieong: The one I played this month in Taiwan. Unfortunately I do not have a PGN available for you.

Chesslife: What are your future goals?
Ieong: I would like to improve and become a better player.

Chesslife: What advice would you give Australian Junior Chess Players?
Ieong: Chess is very good, it gives you a lot of fun and it will help you in your life.

Click on the board below for a review of Ieong’s game in round 2 when he drew against Toby Brookfield from Guernsey.

board 1


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