GM WESLEY So beat IM Nguyen Duc Hoa of Vietnam to regain the solo lead after seven rounds in the Asian Zone 3.3 Chess Championship at the Tagaytay International Convention Center.
The young Filipino GM now has a total of six points with two rounds remaining in the nine-round Swiss Sytem tournament.
So got a huge lift from fellow Filipino GM Joey Antonio, who forced erstwhile co-leader GM Nguyen Ngoc Truong Son of Vietnam to a draw, leaving him in second place with 5.5 points.
Antonio, meanwhile, is now tied with Vietnamese GM Cao Sang for third place with five points.
GMs Mark Paragua, Susanto Megaranto of Indonesia, John Paul Gomez, and Darwin Laylo followed with 4.5 points, respectively.
Laylo and Megaranto forged a truce in their seventh-round encounter, while Paragua and Gomez beat GM Richard Bitoon and FM Tran Tuan Minh of Vietnam, respectively.
The meet, organized by the National Chess Federation of the Philippines, offers two berths to this year's World World Chess Cup in Tromso, Norway.