1969.08.26-09.06. Swiss Team 8 rounds. 26 teams. 152 players.
The more the merrier. Pekan Olahraga Nasional (National Games) or PON held the chess event for the very first time. It was certainly warm welcomed by chess enthusiasts all over Indonesia. No less than 152 players of 25 provinces took part. South East Celebes was the only province who didn’t have representatives. The host, East Java, had 2 teams to even up the number. Up to the year of 1969 it went down in history as the biggest chess event in term of the number of participants.
The competition used 8 round Swiss System with each team fielded four players in each round.
South Borneo team became the champion and grabbed the gold medal. The team collected 24 VP meaning 75% of the possible 32 VP. DKI Jakarta got the silver medal with 1 VP cushion from the champion. West Java had to be satisfied having the bronze medal on their hands following their 21.5 VP. The best player accolades went to to Arovah Bachtiar (South Borneo), Victor Nanjong (South Celebes), and Tigor Hutagalung (DKI Jakarta).
The land of chess players, North Sumatera, was unexpectedly out of the medal contention. The team with players in the caliber of Pokan Damanik and Thomas Sinaga was only able to collect 18 VP on the 4th. Another pre-event favorite, the host team East Java I, even had more disastrous performance. They took number 7 spot below underdogs such as Yogyakarta and South Celebes. East Java I was led by Ardiansyah, a 17 years old starlet who held the 1969 National Champion title.