Sudoku national finalists from regions in the Philippines wrapped their brains around the six-round puzzle contest during the 8th Philippine Sudoku Super Challenge (PSSC) held on February 1, 2014 at Skydome, SM Mall North EDSA, Quezon City.
Drawing a total of 194 participants, the contest which lasted more than five hours made every puzzler in all categories grip tightly just to elude elimination that started in the second round. Surprisingly this year, about 90 percent of the participants made headway from one round to another just to race to the top five for the championship round.
The moment of truth came proving Alvin Ian Chan of the Ateneo De Manila University to be the best puzzler in the grandmaster category this year, winning Php.60,000, and a trophy. Ending up first runner-up was Kaye Janelle Yao of Grace Christian College while Ralph Joshua Sarrosa of the University of the Philippines in Miag-ao, Iloilo was placed second-runner-up. Yao and Sarrosa won trophies and Php.40,000 and Php20,000 respectively.
Making it in the third and fourth runners-up, still in the grandmaster category, were Ethan Riley Chan of Zamboanga Chong Hua High School and Frederick Ong from Bacolod City.
Emerging champion in the wizard category was Natalia Beatrice Dy of St. John’s Institute and she was trailing by Errol John Suarez of Aquinas University in Legazpi City and Gerrick Spencer Limsiy of Grace Christian College. They won P50,000, P30,000 and P20,000, respectively, apart from trophies.
Hazel Anne Pullan of Pasig Catholic College and Gerald Dalan of Olongapo City National High School reached the finish line as third and fourth runners up, respectively.
The Sudoku whiz kid champ this year was Jonathan Conrad Yu of the Philippine Christian Gospel School in Cebu City, winning P20,000 and a trophy. Joining him in the limelight wereRaymund Carlo Masbano of St. John’s Institute in Bacolod City, first runner-up and Kirsten Dominique Chan of Bayanihan Institute in Tarlac City, second runner-up, both taking home trophies and cash prizes of P10,000 and P5,000, respectively.
Bertrand Michael Diola of UP Integrated School managed to stand as third runner-up while Mikhaela Angelique Marcaida of St Francis of Assisi Bayanan- Bacoor, fourth runner-up.
Dr. Simon Chua, the Sudoku grandmaster himself, expressed delight to see the growing number of participants especially in the grandmaster category. He commended the Filipino Sudoku players for showing much improvement in solving the puzzles in every round.
The 8th PSSC organized by MTG Philippines and SM Supermalls in coordination with Skydome, SM Mall North EDSA and was sponsored by Phoenix Publishing House, Inc., Vital 1 Purified Drinking Water, San Miguel Corporation, and the Philippine Chinese General Restaurant Association, Inc. with media partners Inquirer.net and Zamboanga Today
The participants and winners were congratulated by Ms. Millie Dizon, Vice President for Marketing and Communications of SM Malls, Dr. Maria Teresa Namoro, Assistant Chief of Secondary Education Division, DepEd NCR, Ms. Elaine Chong and Ms. Annie Sy, President and General Secretary of Philippine Chinese General Restaurant Association, Inc., respectively.