Wednesday, August 21, 2013

Some Local Chess To Look Forward To

Melbourne has some great chess coming up over the next few weeks, and I'll be following the action on this blog! First, all the clubs around Melbourne are active during this (long, hard...brrrr) winter season. Mirko Rujevic is in complete control of the 7 round swiss Malitis Memorial at the Melbourne Chess Club. He has scored 5.5/6 and sits a point clear of the the rest of the field. David Lacey, Malcolm Pyke and Justin Penrose are on 4.5 with young Jack Puccini and not so young Richard Voon on 4. The final round for this event is next Monday and although the draw has not been published yet I'm guessing it will be up to Justin Penrose to stop Mirko as Lacey and Pyke have already played him.

Before that, on Sunday, MCC is holding the annual Fitzroy Skittles event. This is a losing points rapid tournament where you are given a number of points that you may lose on the day before you are eliminated from the tournament, The higher rated a player, the less points they will have to lose. It is something different, a bit of fun, but of course played in a tournament format to give it that little bit more energy. There are already about 25 players who have entered, including 2 IM's, and I guess quite a few will enter on the day. I'll be there to watch for a while, and I'll post some things about it on this blog!

Meanwhile, the weekend after Hobson's Bay Chess Club are hosting what looks like the Victorian tournament of the year. Their annual Best in the West event has always been an enjoyable event, but this year it looks like it will be an unbelievably strong event, and almost definitely the strongest event in Australia this year not to be FIDE rated. The inclusion of GM Melkumyan from Armenia has attracted a number of strong Aussies to participate including IM's Cheng, Illingworth, and Morris who are all above 2400. I'll be at this one as a blogger too!

All writing and no play makes me rather miss chess though, so I'm happy to be helping to organise the new local club near where I live in Glen Eira. Glen Eira Chess Club is beginning to build a nice vibe and I always look forward to playing there. It's particularly useful for young players who need a local place to play serious chess against adults who can pass on valuable experience. Last week there was an exciting game between 2 young local talents, Max Phillips (= first Victorian under 12 Championship 2013) and Gal Dekal (self taught 13 year old who I would estimate to be in the 1200-1500 strength category (he beat a 1900 rated player the week before!). Gal chose to play a Dragon against Max, probably knowing that Max likes the Dragon himself. Max played a similar structure to what I had played against him the week before. Gal gained a big queen side initiative when Max made some weak looking moves, but Gal pressed too far on the queen side, leaving his king side vulnerable, and Max finished him off nicely.

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