Filipino International Master (IM) Haridas Pascua remained undefeated in five games to share the top spot with Grandmaster (GM) Samy Shoker of Egypt in the 2016 Hong Kong International Open being held at the Kung Lee College in Tai Hang Drive, Hong Kong.
Pascua outclassed Marcus Chen Meng Boon of Singapore in the second round, Andrew Leung Ho Yan of Hong Kong in the third, Denis Molofej of Lithuania in the fourth and GM Zeng Chongsheng in the fifth.
For his part, Shoker clobbered Alexander Karaivanov of Bulgaria in the second, Deng Tian Le of China in third, IM Li Bo of China in the fourth and Dawson Tan Soon of Malaysia in the fifth to join Pascua in a two-way lead with five points each.
Pascua and Shoker will be disputing the solo leadership when they face each other in the sixth round.
IM Oliver Dimakiling and FIDE Master Deniel Causo are sharing the No. 3 spot with six other players with four points apiece.
Dimakiling defeated Benjamin Yao Teng of Hong Kong (second) and Wang Jiaqi of China (third) then split the point with Li (fifth) and compatriot FM Nelson Villanueva (fourth) while Causo outplayed Michael Deng Yu Dong of Hong Kong (second), Zuo Yifan of China (third) and Xu Yuze of China (fifth) but lost to Zeng (fourth).
Joining them in a group of four-pointers are Zeng, Tan Soon, Molofej, Ho Yan, Zou and Koji Noguchi of Japan.
In the sixth round, Dimakiling will be facing Noguchi while Causo battles Tan Soon in the tournament which offers HK $10,000 to the champion while the second placer takes HK $6,000, third placer pockets HK $5,000, fourth placer earns HK $4,000 and fifth placer claims HK $3,000.
The event is using a Swiss System, nine-round format under the latest rules and regulations of FIDE (world chess federation) with title norms may be possible depending of the number of titled players.