Paul Motwani - World Under-17 Champion

The Under-17 World Championship was held in Sas van Gent, Holland, from 27 December 1978 to 6 January 1979.

The tournament was an outstanding success for the 16-year-old Paul Motwani (born 13 June 1962), then a fifth former at St Saviour's High School, Dundee.

Paul, who had won the 1978 Scottish Championship ahead of a number of more experienced players, went through the tournament undefeated, scoring 9 points from his 11 games. Immediately following Paul were Juan Huergo of Cuba with 8 points, Nigel Short (England), also with 8 points, Peter Korzubov (USSR) and Ivan Morovic (Chile) both with 7½. Forty players took part.

Paul's round-by-round results:

Round 1 H. Christofides (Cyprus) 1
Round 2 J. Hjartarson (Iceland ) 1
Round 3 C. Sel (Turkey) 1
Round 4 J. Huergo (Cuba) ½
Round 5 D. Pederson (Denmark) 1
Round 6 P. Korzubov (USSR) ½
Round 7 N. Short (England) 1
Round 8 M. Kong Wong (Singapore) ½
Round 9 D. Filipovich (Canada) 1
Round 10 A. Greenfeld (Israel) 1
Round 11 I. Morovic (Chile)½

Paul in January 1979, after winning the World Under-17 Chess Championship, being lifted up by great school friends Shaun Tierney, Mike Pacione, Andrew Timmons, Gary Clark, Tony Welsh, Mike Holligan, Mike Dickson and Martin Jackson, all at St. Saviour’s RC High School, Dundee.

Photo courtesy of Paul Motwani and his Blog at

Scottish Chess Nr. 52, August 1979, page 23 (publication shows p 13 in error)
Glasgow Herald, January 8 1979, page 18.

Compiled by
Alan McGowan

Updated - 05/01/2019