IM Arthur Ssegwanyi conducted the second CMAT training visit to Rwanda between Sunday 30th April and Saturday 6th May.

The following report was received from Mr Alain Niyibizi, Secretary General of the Rwanda Chess Federation and Country Manager for the KCF Africa MiniChess project in Rwanda.

"Report from visit of IM Arthur Ssegwanyi to Rwanda"

IM Arthur Ssegwanyi arrived in Kigali on Saturday 29th April and held his first formal training session on Sunday morning. His first session focused on chess openings and simple mistakes to avoid during this phase of the game. In the afternoon he spent time on essential endgames for players of below 1600 strength.

Monday saw a second full day of training with the focus being on positional understanding. A large variety of positions were analysed together with the group.

Tuesday saw Arthur holding his first one on one sessions with 4 of the trainees. In the afternoon, this first small group visited a school called Green Hills Academy where Mrs Christella, one of our trainees, is a permanent sport's teacher. We interacted with a group of children aged between 7 and 12 and paid a courtesy visit to the principal of the school who was happy to receive us and expressed his appreciation for the visit.

On Wednesday 3 May, the Rwanda Chess Federation was blessed by the visit of the Indian Grandmaster Sriram Jha who stopped in Kigali on his way home after competing in the Capablanca IM Norm tournament in Johannesburg, South Africa. His flight schedule allowed him to spend one day with us and we used the opportunity to visit Kigali Hope Academy with both IM Arthur and GM Sriram. Together, they encouraged the kids and held a short coaching session before they both participated in a simultaneous match against some of the top Rwanda players. They played against 6 players each with GM Sriram winning all 6 of his matches and IM Arthur scoring 5/6.

Following the departure of GM Jha on Wednesday night, IM Arthur held another round of one on one sessions on Thursday morning. In the evening, we then visited Riviera High School where the local students are all between 12 and 16 years old. They are an active bunch who are eager to know the game of chess. Since the group consists totally of beginners, IM Arthur did a quick recap on the piece movements and explained the differences between Check, Checkmate and Stalemate.

Friday saw the final round of one on one sessions concluded with the last group of 4 trainees.

Saturday was the last day with IM Arthur and he spent this day again working on positional understanding in the morning. The afternoon session was then spent showing the trainees how to get the most out of their software packages such as Chessbase 14.

We are extremely grateful to IM Arthur for sharing his knowledge with us and we hope that he enjoyed his time in Rwanda.