|Rizal moved up the draft to take Eugene Torre first overall.|
MANILA--As expected, Grandmaster Eugene Torre was taken first overall in the Professional Chess Association of the Philippines Draft on Sunday at the Quezon City Sports Club.
The Rizal Towers, which struck a surprise swap deal with cross-provincial rivals Antipolo Cobras to take the top pick, selected the 69-year-old chess legend to headline their team.
Antipolo, now at number seven, drafted National Master Jojo Aquino.
Iloilo took GM Joey Antonio with the second pick, while QC pulled off the second surprise of the day by taking women's woodpusher Michaela Concio at number three.
Iriga then made its own shocker by drafting returning chess star Glennen Artuz, an NM as well, at number four.
Negros selected International Master Joel Pimente at number five, while Cordova drafted Edsel Montoya sixth overall.
San Juan took IM Ricky De Guzman at number eight, while Mindoro selected FIDE Master David Elorta ninth overall.
Lapu-Lapu drafted NM Merben Roque 10th overall, while FIDE Master Vince Alaan was selected 11th overall by Surigao.
Manila took GM Julio Sadorra at number 12, while fellow GM Mark Paragua, in another stunning development, fell to number 13 at the hands of Camarines.
Olongapo selected NM Gefer Imbuido, while Cabuyao selected GM John Paul Gomez.
Toledo took IM Rico Mascarinas, while Cagayan took Jake Tumaliuan even as Chito Garma went to Zamboanga.
NM Marlon Bernardino landed at the hands of General Trias, while Isabela drafted NM Jerome Balico.
NM Elwin Retanal went to Cebu, while Caloocan drafted Paulo Bersamina.
Darwin Laylo was the last GM selected in the first round with Pasig taking him at number 23, while Women's IM Shania Mendoza was the only highly titled female in first round with Palawan making her the last pick of the said round.
Notable players drafted into the second round include WIM Catherine Secopito (25th overall by Palawan), GM Rogelio Barcenilla (34th overall by Cabuyao), and WIM Jodi Foronda (41st overall by San Juan).
GM Oliver Barbosa fell to the third round with the Predators taking him 56th overall.
Follow him on Twitter: @IvanSaldajeno