After the excitement of the Australian Championships which were held at the Mingara Club near Gosford and the Australian Junior Championships which were held at Monash University, Gippsland Campus, we can all settle down to the day to day task of trying to advance Australian chess. Congratulations to the Australian Champion, Darryl Johansen (Vic) who with four wins equals the Australian record held by William Viner, Cecil Purdy and Lagos Steiner. We also congratulate the Australian Junior Champion, Justin Tan (NSW), who convincingly won the title over a strong field including Zong Yuan Zhao who had finished second equal in the Australian Championships.
The Australian Major was won by John Myers (Qld), the Minor by Shervin Rafizadeh (ACT), the Under 12 by Gareth Oliver (ACT) and the Under 12 Girls by Michelle Lee (Vic) who is still under 10. We thank most sincerely the organisers of both events for the huge effort they put in to make the tournaments the success that they were. Our very best wishes go to the Canberra organisers who I know are working hard to put on a great show for both the Australian Open and Australian Juniors next January. Perhaps states who are really keen to put on the January 2002 Australian Championships and Australian Juniors could contact me soon. The ACF does, of course, have a priority roster for these events.
As it is three weeks since the last bulletin, this is a bumper issue which will take some reading. My apologies . . .
NATIONAL CONFERENCE WRAP UP
The National Conference was held at the Mingara Club on Thursday 6 January. The Conference and the Council meeting that followed were well attended and I felt both addressed the issues very constructively. Regarding the proposed restucture of Australian chess, a motion was passed setting up a sub-committee charged with the task of proposing recommendations for a major restucture of Australian chess. The sub-committee will have one representative from each state and territory and two from the ACF executive.
Although not yet a financial member, the Northern Territory was invited to put forward one representative. The sub-committee has to submit an interim report to Council by the March meeting and a final report by 20 June. The meeting was not satisfied with any recommendations maintaining the status quo. Virtually unanimously, those present saw the need for a substantial restructure. Bearing in mind that there are still many differing ideas on precisely what action is required, the forming of a sub-committee must surely be a good outcome.
SELECTIONS FOR OLYMPIAD, WORLD JUNIORS, ASIAN JUNIORS, CHILDREN'S OLYMPIAD AND ZONAL SEEDS
This is an important year which includes the Olympiad to be held in Istanbul from 27 October to 13 November. Next week we will give information on how the various selection processes will work.
GRAND PRIX 2000
Jason Lyons has done a brilliant job in restructuring and revitalising the Grand Prix which will finish with the Australian Open at the end of the year. Here are the full details as supplied by Jason.
JASON LYONS <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Grand Prix 2000 kicks off next weekend (February 5-6) with the Newcastle Open - a Class 2 event (details below). There are 38 events entered in this year's circuit, culminating in the Australian Open in Canberra. There is over $100,000 to be won throughout the Grand Prix circuit, including a $9,000 pot of gold at the end of the rainbow, so get cracking next weekend in Newcastle.
Every Australian chess club on the ACF database is being sent a Grand Prix kit this week. If your club does not receive one, please email email@example.com to obtain yours. As you'll see, the Grand Prix is coming to a chess tournament near you . . . drumroll . . .
Tournament, Dates, Venue, Contact information:
1. Newcastle Open February 5-6 Newcastle Workers Club Colin Parsons (02) 4946 9267
2. Taree RSL Summer Open February 19-20 Taree Sports and Recreation Club Endel Lane (02) 6559 9060
3. Labour Day Open March 4-6 Hobart Migrant Resource Centre David Ferris (03) 6225 1523
4. Hervey Bay Open March 11-12 Hervey Bay Motel & Resort Derek Elkington (07) 4126 0201
5. Ballarat Begonia Open March 11-12 Ballarat School of Mines Patrick Cook (03) 5331 6658
6. Darling Downs Open April 21-23 Toowoomba Grammar School Les Lord (07) 4735 7755
7. Doeberl Cup April 21-24 Fenner Hall, Canberra Roger McCart (02) 6251 6190
8. 35th Peninsula Open April 29-May 1 Clontarf High School Norman Braybrook (0418) 716 374
9. Hobson's Bay Open May 6-7 ADASS Centre, Altona North Peter Caissa (0411) 710 900
10. Adelaide Cup May 13-14 SACA, 10 Ranelagh St, Adelaide Chess Centre (08) 8211 7189
11. Basta Shield May 13-15 Melbourne Chess Club, Fitzroy MCC (03) 9416 3149
12. NSWCA Open May 27-28 Ashfield Catholic Club (TBC) Michael Walsh (0407) 068 550
13. Tasmanian Ch'ship June 10-12 Creative Living Centre, Burnie Neville Ledger (03) 6431 1280
14. Vic Open June 10-12 Melbourne (venue TBA) Fred Vanderlinde (03) 5998 7757
15. Queen's Birthday Open June 10-11 SACA, 10 Ranelagh St, Adelaide Chess Centre (08) 8211 7189
16. NSWCA Koshnitsky Mem'l June 10-11 Sydney (venue TBA) Michael Walsh (0407) 068 550
17. Taree RSL Open June 24-25 Taree Sports and Recreation Club Endel Lane (02) 6559 9060
18. Gold Coast Open June 24-25 Somerset College Sports Pavillion Graeme Gardiner (07) 5530 3777
19. Noosa Open July 1-2 Noosa Bicentennial Centre Robert Hochstadt (07) 5447 5056
20. QVB Stakes July 7-8 QVB Ballroom, Sydney Jason Lyons (0412) 90 76 86
21. ANU Open July 22-23 Australian National Uni, Canberra Andrew Greenwood (02) 6291 0385
22. Mackay Open August 5-6 Mercy College, Penn St, Mackay Stan Long Hong (07) 4953 4573
23. North Queensland Open August 12-13 Townsville (venue TBA) Keith Macleod (07) 4728 2060
24. NSWCA Open August 19-20 Rockdale, Sydney (venue TBC) Michael Walsh (0407) 068 550
25. Whale Open August 26-27 Hervey Bay Motel & Resort Derek Elkington (07) 4126 0201
26. Gold Coast Classic September 9-10 Somerset College Sports Pavillion Graeme Gardiner (07) 5530 3777
27. Lidum's Cup Sep 30 Oct 1 SACA, 10 Ranelagh St, Adelaide Chess Centre (08) 8211 7189
28. Redcliffe Challenge October 7-8 Clontarf High School Norman Braybrook (0418) 716 374
29. Coal City Open October 14-15 Cardiff Workers Club George Lithgow (02) 4943 3862
30. Tweed Heads Open October 28-29 Tweed Heads Civic Centre Audie Pennefather (07) 5536 9185
31. Central Coast Weekender October 28-29 Central Coast Leagues Club Keith Farrell (02) 4341 7864
32. Tasmanian Open November 4-6 Hobart (venue TBA) Kevin Bonham (03) 6224 8487
33. Melbourne Cup November 4-7 Melbourne Chess Club, Fitzroy MCC (03) 9416 3149
34. Taree RSL Spring Open November 18-19 Taree Sports and Recreation Club Endel Lane (02) 6559 9060
35. Vikings Weekender December 9-10 Tuggeranong Rugby Club Andrew Greenwood (02) 6291 0385
36. NSWCA Centenary Open December 16-17 Sydney (venue TBA) Michael Walsh (0407) 068 550
37. Christmas Swiss December 16-17 Melbourne (venue TBA) Fred Vanderlinde (03) 5998 7757
38. Australian Open Dec 28 Jan 9 Rydges Hotel, Canberra Andrew Greenwood (02) 6291 0385
GARRY KOSHNITSKY MEMORIAL FESTIVAL
Plans are proceeding well. Tournaments involved now include the following:
7-17 June - Parkroyal Surfers Paradise International
24-25 June - Gold Coast Open
1-2 July - Noosa Open
8-9 July - QVB Open, Sydney
15-16 July - ANU Open, Canberra
24 July-4 August - Australian Masters, Melbourne
Evelyn Koshnitsky has advised that she will be putting on an event in Adelaide as the finale to the Garry Koshnitsky Memorial Chess Festival. More details will be advised as soon as they are available.
ACF RAPID RATINGS LIST
Rapid games between 15 minutes and 59 minutes per player for the whole game will now be eligible for rating in the ACF's new rapid rating list. Rapid Games of 60 minutes per player for the whole game are rated in the current ACF system. The Rapid list will be issued at the same time as the main ACF rating lists in April, August and December. The first Rapid list is expected to be the April 2000 list. Results should still be submitted in the first instance to state ratings officers. Many thanks to Bill Gletsos, Graham Saint and state ratings officers.
ASIAN YOUTH CHAMPIONSHIPS FOR BOYS AND GIRLS UNDER 10,12 and 14
Tehran, Iran 25 March to 2 April, 2000
Ages as at 1/1/2000
Extra entries allowed upon paying entry fee of 500 Swiss Francs
Free board and lodging for nominated players
40/120 and 30 mins a side quick play finish
Please email ROBERT JAMIESON firstname.lastname@example.org if you are interested in representing Australia.
ASIAN MEN'S AND WOMEN'S
This very strong event was held in Udaipur, India over the last couple of weeks. Tim Reilly scored 3.5/11 and came 26/27 whilst Narelle Szuveges scored 3.5/11 and came 17/19.
IA GARY BEKKER, ACF International Ratings Officer
The new January 2000 FIDE ratings for all players in Oceania are now available from my Oceania web site http://www.eagles.bbs.net.au/~gbekker/index.htm
Further ratings can be downloaded from the FIDE website.
Oceania 3.2b Zonal Championship, Auckland, (NZL), Dates: 20.05.00 - 28.05.00
Arbiter: Peter Stuart, Organiser: Michael Freeman Web Site: http://ourworld.compuserve.com/homepages/nzchess/
Info: A 9-round Swiss tournament, without rest days, played at the Auckland Chess Centre, 17 Cromwell Street, Mt Eden, Auckland. The event is restricted to the five selected men's representatives, and paying entrants rated over 2100 FIDE, from the four current Oceania Zone nations. These are Australia (2 reps), New Zealand (1 rep), Fiji (1 rep) and Papua New Guinea (1 rep). Selected representatives will be provided with free entry and billet accommodation only. All other players must pay the tournament entry fee of NZ$400. Entries should be sent to Michael Freeman by 1st April 2000 so enter now! Please contact Michael for details or info on several top level tournaments in the Asia/Pacific region, go to Gary Bekker's site:
Andrew Greenwood thinks that an ideal time to hold a national universities' teams event is during the Inter Varsities Sports Week and I strongly agree with him. This year IV Sports Week is being held in Ballarat in the week following the Olympic Games (first week of October). Andrew would be interested in organising this in a normal year but this year he is on the Australian Open Organising Committee. Do we have anyone involved in University chess who would be interested in trying to organise this inaugural teams event?
38th DOEBERL CUP - 21 to 24 APRIL 2000 (Easter) - Fenner Hall, 210 Northbourne Ave, Canberra ACT
ROGER McCART (Convener, Doeberl Cup) Ph: 02-62516190 e-mail: Roger.McCart@anu.edu.au
Open Division (FIDE-rated)
Under 2150 $300
Best Junior $200
Best Local $100
Major Division (Rated under 2000 only)
Under 1700 $250
Best Junior $100
Best Local $100
Minor Division (Rated under 1600 only)
Under 1350 $200
Best Unrated $100
April 21 (Good Friday):
12:00 noon Entries close
1:15 pm Opening ceremony
1:30 pm Round 1
7:00 pm Round 2
10:00am Round 3
3:00pm Round 4
10:00am Round 5
3:00pm Round 6
9:00am Round 7
Adult $85 (Gms, IMs free)
Under 18s $45
A $20/$10 discount applies if entry is received by 14-04-2000.
A $20 surcharge applies for under 2000 non-FIDE rated entries to Open Section.
Players must be ACT or State Association members.
Digital clocks will be used.
Open Section (FIDE rated): 32 moves in 90 minutes, then 24 moves in 30 minutes, followed by 20 seconds per move.
Major/ Minor Sections: 40 moves in 90 minutes, then 30 moves in 30 minutes, followed by 20 seconds per move.
Paul Dunn (Treasurer, Doeberl Cup) 20 Richmond St Macquarie ACT 2614
Roger McCart (Convener, Doeberl Cup) Ph: 02-62516190 e-mail: Roger.McCart@anu.edu.au
GOLD COAST TIN CUP
This event for Under 1600 players will be held next weekend, 5/6 February, at Somerset College. Contact Bruce Harris email@example.com. We normally get around 80-90 players for this tournament.
2001 AUSTRALIAN OPEN
28 December 2000 - 09 January 2001
A Class 3 ACF 2000 Grand Prix Event, Rydges Canberra, London Circuit, ACT
Australian Centenary Chess Championships 2001
2001 Australian Open
28 December 2000 09 January 2001, Canberra, The Nation's Capital
The 2001 Australian Open will be run in two sections:
1. An "Open" section, open to all players. The Open will run between 28 December 2000 09 January 2001 with one round per day.
2. Two optional one-week Minor tournaments running in parallel with the Open, running between 28 December 31 December and 02 January 09 January respectively.
Players may elect to play in one or both of the Minor events. Players competing in the Open will also be given the chance to enter one of the Minor events. People not able to commit to the longer dates therefore will have the opportunity of playing in one or both of the shorter events. There will be rest days on January 01 and January 07. The Australian Lightning and Rapid-Play Championships will be conducted on the rest days.
Rounds will commence for the Open at 2:00pm on playing days. Rounds for the Minor events will commence at 9:00am and/or 2:00pm. The Australian Centenary Chess Championships will also include the Australian Junior Championships, to be held between 11 January and 23 January 2001. Simultaneous displays, lectures and nightly lightning tournaments will also be held over the period of the Open and Junior Championships.
Australian Centenary of Federation Program
The Organising Committee has approached the National Council for the Centenary of Federation. The Council has welcomed our application and invited the Championships to be part of the Australian Centenary of Federation Program. The Championships offer chess players the opportunity to celebrate this unique and most important time in Australian history.
Rydges Canberra (formerly the Lakeside Hotel), London Circuit, Canberra City. The venue is near the City Centre, close to a vast number of shops, cafes and restaurants. The main domestic and interstate bus interchange is located nearby. The entire luxurious hotel conference floor will be available for use. There is a main hall (ballroom) for the tournament and separate (function) rooms for DOPs, analysis, bulletins and journalists. Catering will be available for competitors and there are two restaurants at the hotel. A lunch delicatessen will be in operation for the competitors. Free secured parking will be available at the venue. The venue is air-conditioned.
A range of accommodation options will be available. The Organising Committee has received quotations from Rydges Canberra, Fenner Hall and many other accommodation centres. Packages will be tailored to meet the needs of the competitors and officials.
Open entry fees: $120, concession $96. Entry fees for the Minor events will be less. An early-entry system will be used on a sliding scale.
The Organising Committee has a commitment of sponsorship to the value of $10,000.
The projected prize structure will be announced in the coming months. Generous prizes in various place and ratings divisions will be available for both the Open and the Minor events.
For further information please contact: Andrew Greenwood, Organising Committee Convener, Australian Centenary Chess Championships 2001, Australian Capital Territory Chess Association Inc.
Tel/Fax: 02 6291-0385; E-mail: Andrew.A.Greenwood@student.anu.edu.au
Web-site: http://www.auschess.org.au/centenary/ (under construction)
I thought I would take up your invitation to respond to the restructure of Australian chess proposed by the ACF. These comments are based on the discussion paper, bulletin 38 a.
Overall, I think that the reform program is extremely impressive and well thought out. In particular, I think the principal funding mechanism, through the national rating and membership scheme, is essential for the development of Australian chess. Amongst its other advantages, the scheme appears to be clearly equitable - those regular competitors who get the most out of the services provided by the chess administration will be those making the largest contribution.
There are two aspects I wish to comment upon:
1) Role of State Associations:
I found that I did not gain a very clear picture of the role envisaged for the current state associations under the proposed reforms. At one point it is stated that:
"The main changes proposed involve states/territories becoming branches of the ACF, thus ceding their powers to an independent board of elected experts who would run the ACF. These changes would relieve states/territories of the necessity of having separate legal and financial responsibilities".
On the other hand, it is also part of the plan that the state associations would receive a fixed amount of revenue from the ACF to perform their functions. I would have thought that this for this to occur the state associations would presumably have to retain independent legal personality and financial responsibility.
If, however, the proposal really is for state branches to lose all their independent functions and become branches of the ACF, then I am very sceptical of the prospects of all the state associations agreeing to vote themselves out of (independent) existence on the basis of this proposal.
Even a prudent state association, for example, who supported the proposed scheme, might be very reluctant to surrender its powers until it was convinced that the ACF and the new national scheme was actually working as intended. They might think that they would only take such a momentous decision if they could see for themselves that the new system was already working better.
I suggest, therefore, that the ACF might consider a transitional framework, perhaps over five years or so, where the state associations gradually cede powers to the ACF (starting with the ratings systems).
If the ACF could demonstrate after a year or two that the new system was starting to work, it would then be feasible to put to the state associations that the final stages of the program be implemented. I would think that such an approach would have a far greater chance of success than one which requires the states to make such a difficult decision before they have had any chance to assess how the reforms might be working in practice.
2) Role of Clubs:
The scope of the reform proposals is extremely impressive - I was particularly pleased to see, for example, that it even extended to university chess. I think, however, that there is one real gap - there is nothing on the role of the clubs.
In NSW, without knowing the figures, there are very substantial numbers of active players who are not members of the State association, but participate in tournaments - such as the Interleagues - and events run by their local club (which do not require NSWCA membership). There needs to be something in the restructuring proposal to attract both the clubs, and these kinds of players.
This reflects a broader concern with the direction of Australian chess administration, at both state and national level. The administration of chess appears to be geared entirely towards the serious, competitive tournament player. I am sure, however, this group of serious competitive players represents only a small portion of the potential group of people interested in chess. I think there is a very substantial untapped market in providing services to less competitive players.
There ought to be a focus on providing opportunities to enjoy social chess, to provide group coaching sessions, to introduce books and instructional videos, to provide simul displays, to provide beginner classes and courses, and so on. Chess clubs have, with varying degrees of success, attempted to provide such services.
I think that if the ACF wants to substantially increase its scope and membership it must take a much broader focus than the current preoccupation with the tournament player. The organisation of bridge in NSW provides a good contrast, where the social player is taken far more seriously. The prospect of spending many hours locked in serious, over-the-board competition, is not, I suspect, what attracts most people to chess in the first place. Chess needs to be promoted as not only a clever sport, but also as a fun sport!
I hope these comments are of some interest. I congratulate you and the ACF on your work, and I sincerely hope that a scheme along the lines of your proposal comes to fruition. I will watch with interest!
Very best wishes to all