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  1. #1
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    Lloyd Fell RIP (1918 – 2010)

    Lloyd Fell RIP (1918 – 2010)

    The grand old man of Australian chess Lloyd Fell of Sydney passed away peacefully yesterday afternoon at the age of 91.

    Fell was the most active chess player in the history of Australian chess for over 6.5 decades.

    He will be sadly missed.

    Funeral arrangements (10am Monday 24 May) will be announced in tomorrow’s (Friday) Sydney Morning Herald.

    Peter Parr

  2. #2
    CC Grandmaster Basil's Avatar
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    Thank you for letting me know. Rest in peace Lloyd.
    There is no cure for leftism. Its infestation of the host mostly diminishes with age except in the most rabid of specimens.

  3. #3
    Reader in Slood Dynamics Rincewind's Avatar
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    Vale Lloyd Fell.

    His enthusiasm for chess was unwavering over an incredibly long period.

    Unfortunately I only played him once. Lloyd won. An interesting game from memory. Score to follow in a few days when I get back home.
    So einfach wie mφglich, aber nicht einfacher - Albert Einstein

  4. #4
    CC Grandmaster ER's Avatar
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    RIP Lloyd Fell

    Thanks Peter, I had various encounters (mostly pleasant) with Lloyd throughout the years. The last one in Sydney (Norths) at the beginning of this year during the Aus Champs where he was kibbitzing and complaining about too many steps to get to the main hall or something like that ...
    Lloyd, a working class man, a railway unionist, a tough, rough but fair dinkum figure, characteristic of an era that was already long gone when he left us, will be remembered for his sportmanship, dry humour, sharp wit and eternal whingeing.
    Lloyd, thanks for that King's Indian Defence trap you showed me at the Hakoa Club in the early 80's, RIP.
    * I heard somewhere that one of our strongest ever players, an Olympian and many titles holder once exchanged to a N&B vs lone K ending hoping that the old man wouldn't know or wouldn't remember how to reach the mating position, but the old man did!
    ** I also heard that Lloyd was once NSW (or was it Sydney City) Champion in Chess as well as in Draughts.
    I am not sure of either, but people in the know can shed some light!
    Last edited by ER; 20-05-2010 at 01:34 PM.
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  5. #5
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    Farewell Lloyd

    Thanks, Peter.

    That's sad news; the end of an era, but what a full life Lloyd had.

    A couple of funny incidents over the years spring to mind...

    Once I was losing in a tournament game to Lloyd and trying to find a way to swindle a draw. Given his advancing age even way back then, and the guillotine finish, I had the brilliant idea of taking refuge in a King versus King, knight and bishop ending. I figured that with not much time left on the clock the old guy would get flustered trying to mate me inside 50 moves and I'd get an ill deserved draw.

    Much to my chagrin Lloyd belted out mate in 35 without turning a hair, not that he had many to turn.

    He then stared at me indignantly over his reading glasses. 'You thought I couldn't do it?', he squeaked, then declared, 'I know every ending ever invented, off by heart. I can do that one in my sleep.'

    Then, to complete my humiliation, for the next hour and a half I could hear a high pitched voice holding forth in the background, surrounded by a coterie of admirers. 'West thought I couldn't mate with knight and bishop against lone King. I can do that blindfold. Juniors nowdays don't know anything. I know every endgame ever invented, off by heart. Knight and bishop is easy. Here, I'll show you. Put the pieces anywhere you like.'

    Another time I was playing in the Doeberl Cup at the old Griffin centre. Suddenly there was a commotion. I heard Lloyd's distinctive high pitched voice calling out for the DOP. A bemused Lloyd informed the arbiter that another player in the tournament had taken his little black bag and thrown it out of the room. (Not sure why he thought this was the DOP's jurisdiction)

    It transpired that the other player was suffering a psychotic delusion that he was a Detective Inspector in the police force and that Lloyd's bag contained a bomb. Fortunately the bag was recovered without recourse to the bomb squad, and for the rest of the tournament Lloyd could be heard indignantly recounting the tale to anyone who would listen. 'He said my bag had a bomb in it. My bag didn't have a bomb in it! What's his problem?'

    I don't know what happened to the Detective Inspector, but I suspect the men with butterfly nets may have quietly dropped by. Or maybe the DOP (was it you, Peter?) sorted it out.

    Lloyd was pretty old school conservative and held numerous views that wouldn't be popular in today's politically correct world. I found him very funny to talk to. He was a great character of the game and added colour to every event he played in. He was prodigiously active and many years when I thought I would top the 'most active players' list I'd be thwarted by either Lloyd Fell or Moddaskew Ali. (Okay, Mosaddeque if you're a stickler for spelling.)

    Lloyd was obviously very intelligent and talented. I was told he was a former Australian draughts champion and even well beyond his prime he used to keep the top chessplayers honest, upsetting many big name players, including even Ian Rogers I think.

    For years I dreamed of beating Lloyd on time in a tournament game and given how often we played, eventually it happened. I was finally able to realise my life's dream and say to him straight faced,

    'I'm sorry Flag, your Lloyd fell.'

    Lloyd's flag has finally fallen and chess tournaments, especially his beloved Doeberl Cup, won't be the same without him. He played tournament chess to an age when most are long gone, and his competitive spirit still burned brightly. He spanned the generations of Australian chess and linked the present day to the past. Funny, uncompromising, charismatic and one of the great chess lovers in Australian history, Lloyd will be long remembered and greatly missed.
    Last edited by Gattaca; 20-05-2010 at 01:59 PM.

  6. #6
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    Just noticed that JAK was posting while I was, and some of my comments have duplicated his. Sorry about that!

  7. #7
    CC Grandmaster ER's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Gattaca
    Just noticed that JAK was posting while I was, and some of my comments have duplicated his. Sorry about that!
    LOL it's ok, proves the rumour was true too! A great piece or writing too! Collectors item!
    Last edited by ER; 20-05-2010 at 02:05 PM.
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  8. #8
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    This is very sad news. I had the privilage of staying with him, and getting to know him (even though it was only a short period of time, insignificant compared to his long and properous life). He was a good man.

    RIP.
    'And the man in the back said "Everyone attack!", and it turned into a ballroom blitz. And the girl in the corner said "Boy I wanna warn ya, it'll turn into a ballroom blitz." Brian Connolly

  9. #9
    CC Grandmaster antichrist's Avatar
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    LLoyd also knew a bit about classical music, able to chat with one of my music freak relos about all the great composers. I confess again that I deliberately led him astray into getting barred at NSW championship at Parramatta RSL re that cheating incident. But I did not want him barred. The only time he was barred I think.

    He sounded like a bit of a racist but not really in practise. I don't think he discriminated and was friendly and approachable with everyone. Just his gruff manner and racist facade put some people off. But like me he just likes to stir and challenge people. I read today that Cristopher Hitchens is also like that, not happy unless upsetting and arguing with people. He claimed that his Jewish heritage gave him the right to upset that mob as well - and he very well did. Though keeping friends with them on a personal basis. Maybe his going through the depression effected his choices in life, he wanted to not spend too much money. I don't know of him ever marrying. I would make a point of being friendly with him, sometimes appreciated and sometimes not.

  10. #10
    CC resident nutcase Trent Parker's Avatar
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    I remember the first time I played lloyd fell. It was at the NSW lightning championships....I stuffed up and ended up stalemating Lloyd in a KQ v K endgame...... the last time I ever did that!

    I had the honour of defeating Lloyd in a standard game at the Australia Day Weekender a few years ago. He played the Nimzo Indian which I had been playing at that time...... I'll have to find that game.....

    But I feel that this win only minorly related to my increase in strength rather more likely due to his decrease in latter years.

    A person I was happy to speak to although I did not agree with certain things he might have said
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  11. #11
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    Smile Lloyd Fell-my friend living(and chuckling)on in my mind

    Lloyd Fell- Im proud to say I knew and loved Lloyd Fell for the wonderful eccentric person he was and that always brought a smile to my face when he greeted me. Lloyd was famous for his jolly Santa type laugh, his baggy trousers and his 'Signature" braces which held his pants up whist still working at State Rail as a Boilermaker. Hed laugh as his belly bounced like Santa Claus as he regailed he only had to go to State Rail to light up the furnaces and then sit down all day.Everyone who knows Lloyd will recall with fear the day he retired from NSW Railways. His tournament results in the first 12-18 months were absolutely outstanding!!!!! Lloyd sometimes travelled with me and Fred Flatow to Lloyds beloved Doeberl Cup and we'd stop at Goulburn. Lloyd would laugh at us as he ordered his steak n eggs (full mixed grill) for breakfast and I said gee Llloyd crikey thats a lot to eat. Lloyd replied he ate steak n eggs every day of his life! Who can forget how Lloyd would say he won the NSW Draughts Championship in 1950? and how rook n pawn endings were just like draughts and he was best rook n pawn expert and could NEVER be beaten from an equal position!! Lloyd will likely join his old chessmates Karl Madjaric, John Kellner and Yaraslav Schewchyk and CJS Purdy and others in the great heavenly Chess Centre and likely try giving his maker a few chess lessons to! I loved the old bugga.
    Last edited by John Curtis FM; 21-05-2010 at 06:11 PM.

  12. #12
    Reader in Slood Dynamics Rincewind's Avatar
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    Sydney Grade Matches U2000
    2001.07.31
    Fell, Lloyd - RW

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    1-0

    My position was no a razor's edge. The following line might have kept me in the game.

    33...Rd2 34.Qe3 Rd1 35.Rxd1 Qxd1 36.Qxb6 Qxf3 37.Qd8+ Kg7 38.Qd3 Qh1+ 39.Kf2 Qxh2+ 40.Ke1 Qb2 41.b5 Bd5

    But I was getting short on time, as I recall.
    So einfach wie mφglich, aber nicht einfacher - Albert Einstein

  13. #13
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    Vale Lloyd Fell

    Just a few items to add to the many thing already said about Lloyd.
    I interviewed him at Parramatta in 2008 for my planned book on the Doeberl Cup, Some of the things he told me:

    "I'm the best endgame player in the world - put that in your book"
    He didn't learn chess till he was 21.
    He won the Australian Checkers/Draughts championship in Brisbane in the 1950s.
    His proudest achievement was winning the NSW state championship once, in 1963, against very tough opposition (including Fuller, Crowl, Hay, Flatow, Viner, Kellner, and the Purdys).
    His most admired player was Alekhine but the one he tried to emulate was Capabalanca (later Karpov).
    His toughest opponent was Koshnitsky - only one win against him.
    His most memorable Doeberl game was the 73 move last round draw against Ian Rogers in 1978 that earned him part of an 8-way tie for first.

    I was part of the organising committee that gave Lloyd lifetime free entry to the Doeberl after he had played more than 30 times. When I interviewed him in Parramatta in 2008 he was his usual lively self but when I saw him at the Doeberl a few months later I was shocked at his decline. I told the organisers I doubted he would be back again so they arranged a special presenatation to him at the closing ceremony. It was the only time I saw him smile at the event.
    Ironically it seems his absence the following year was due more to problems organising accommodation than inability to compete, but the writing was on the wall at this years Aus Champs, as he was a very frail spectator but game to the end.
    The Doeberl, and Australian chess, wil be poorer without Lloyd's garrulous kibitzing
    Bill Egan

  14. #14
    CC Grandmaster antichrist's Avatar
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    Sometimes I did not envy Lloyd because it seemed that his only purpose in life was chess. I am unaware of him doing anything else challenging in life.

  15. #15
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    yesterday morning I wrote the following in our local (Central Coast NSW) Chess email Bulletin :

    In the 1980's I heard Lloyd's voice call "who is this Keith Farrell" since I had played more tournament games than he in the period, and for a year or so our numbers if not results were vying , this was a little after I had been acquainted with his rather irascible 'charms'. My very first brush (I think, I may be wrong - it was in 1985 the inaugural Gosford Open) with Lloyd's blunt analysis was when he declared that I must be an idiot to have thrown away a winning game in a terribly butchered endgame against Glen Devine. It wasn't till a couple of years later when a fellow competition excitedly invited me to watch Lloyd In Post Mortem - it was true Lloyd could be immensely entertaining declaring things like "the man's a genius, it takes true genius to find the one losing move here" and "the position was foolproof, it took a fool to prove it".

    1999-2000 saw Lloyd stay at my place for a fortnight while we both played in the Australian Champs (at Mingara) - he in the Seniors comp while we (another local he gave a lift to) struggled in the Minor Section, going through games we played was instructive and enjoyable - and when he showed me some of his correspondence games let me appreciate that form - if only I had the Discipline. Lloyd had been a keen Draughts player before chess - and thinking about Correspondence draughts - ten games against each other at a time (the incidence of draws being much higher) - all this from the 1940's on. One amusing incident he related was how he sent the correct moves to the wrong game and then I think he resigned in the next post (only the 1 game he mucked up - and perhaps before the reply (am unsure about that) ).

    In 2001 Lloyd won the White Knight/Toukley weekender (the rating limit was under 2000 at the time). Since Michael Roche established them (in 1998) we at Gosford have awarded two trophies at Gosford's yearly Open - The Lloyd Fell Senior and Junior for those who have outperformed their ratings.

    I bumped into Lloyd at The Australian Championships early January this year.

    Lloyd won the 1944 City of Sydney Chess tournament also in 1960, 1962, 1973,. In 1963 he was NSW Champion.

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