We were able to have an exclusive with one of Nigeria’s strongest female player on her birthday though we werent able to finish the interview coz she was very busy. The interview was adjourned till when you would be totally free which was 2days later. Seems she spent 2days to celebrate this year’s birthday, expect a whole week’s birthday nextyear (just joking).
She is multi talented. You would be awed at some of the things she can do off the board as well.
We Present to you one of Nigeria’s strongest and most beautiful female chess player; HAFSAT BELLO-OSAGIE
1. Can we meet you?
My name is Hafsat Bello-Osagie. I am from Benin City, Edo State. I am the 2nd of 4 children, grew up with a lot of cousins and extended family. Very exciting childhood i had.
I attended Unilag Staff School then ISL Unilag later to Queens College and studied Biochemistry in Unilag.
2. When did you start playing chess?
I started playing actively since 2006 but before then i learnt the moves and techniques in secondary school.
3. When was your first tournament break through?
My first tournament breakthrough was NBL2010 I think.
Tied 5th with Olatunji Oluwatobi in that Tournament.
4. Your most memorable game?
That’s a tough one because there have been several…some of them eventually led to a loss though; but if i had
to pick from the ones that led to victories, i’d say a game i played against funmi Akinola at Eko Classics 2013.
She was 2years younger as at the time of this game (#chuckling)…
The game below:
[Event “Lagos International Chess Classics”]
[White “Akinola, Olufunmilayo”]
[Black “Bello Osagie, Hafsat”]
1. e4 c5 2. Nf3 d6 3. Bb5+ Bd7 4. Bxd7+ Qxd7 5. d3 Nf6 6. Nc3 Nc6 7. a3 a6 8.
h3 e6 9. O-O Be7 10. Re1 Qc7 11. Be3 O-O 12. d4 cxd4 13. Nxd4 Rfd8 14. Qe2 b5
15. Rad1 Ne5 16. Bc1 Nc4 17. Qf3 Rac8 18. Qg3 Nxa3 19. bxa3 Qxc3 20. Re3 Qc7
21. c3 d5 22. e5 Ne4 23. Rxe4 dxe4 24. Qf4 Qxc3 25. Qxe4 Rc4 26. Be3 Qxa3 27.
Rd3 Qb4 28. Qb7 Qb1+ 29. Kh2 Qxd3 30. Qxe7 Rcxd4 0-1
5. Other interests aside chess?
I am quite athletic. I played basketball actively for my schools (Secondary and University). I swim very often, shoot pool quite well and love music.
6. What genre of music do you listen to and don’t tell me its rock or rap?
I love rock…alternative rock. But i listen to different genres…even reggae. Just not hard on rap.
7. Any Nigerian chess idol?
I don’t have an idol really, just a few players i respect and enjoy thier style of play, but my
favourites are….IM Bunmi Olape (all day everyday) and CM Femi Balogun.
8. Any favourite world chess player?
Love Judith Polgar and Magnus Carlsen.
9. Your stiffest opponent in Nigerian female chess?
For now i can’t say, coz there are several good players i haven’t played still…when i played Tobi though,
she left a good impression…she’s sound! So i had to really think deep and be very careful…i still lost though (lol).
10. I can’t help but notice you are always putting on a big rim glasses, what is the catch?
I like the geeky-posh look of it and it suits my face.
11. You are a very interesting person knowing you this upclose.
Thanks for the compliment.
Happy Belated Birthday!