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  1. #1
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    What happened to the Australian Chess Teams Championships 2004?

    You’ll have to excuse me - I’ve been out of chess for the last 17 years. Only just found my way back into the rabbit hole.
    I know the inaugural 2003 event’s results were as follow:

    1st. UNSW 30.0 – 2nd St George (Sydney) 29.0 – 3rd Bullwinkle 22.0 – 4th Gold Coast 17.5 – 5th Belconnen 16.5 and 6th - Suncoast 5.0

    A full report with wonderful background stories can be found in the ACF Bulletin 236. UNSW’s winning last round result coming from board 8, who was a last-minute fill-in from Somerset College, is priceless. Jacob Edward’s account of his team’s mirth and merriment, with a bit of chess thrown in, is well worth the price of admission.

    The 2004 event was talked about on Chess Chat but I couldn’t find any results.

    I’ve only today read the discussions on the event from 2003/04. The amount of passion that this event generated is hard to believe today. The comments from Jenni Oliver, Kerry Stead, Paul S, Cat and others showed that the 2003 event was taken very, very seriously, for many different reasons. You can’t buy this type of enthusiasm. Go back to Chess Chat 2004 and have a look. The Drongos versus the Sheilas, priceless!

    So what happened?

  2. #2
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kerry Corker View Post
    You’ll have to excuse me - I’ve been out of chess for the last 17 years. Only just found my way back into the rabbit hole.
    I know the inaugural 2003 event’s results were as follow:

    1st. UNSW 30.0 – 2nd St George (Sydney) 29.0 – 3rd Bullwinkle 22.0 – 4th Gold Coast 17.5 – 5th Belconnen 16.5 and 6th - Suncoast 5.0

    A full report with wonderful background stories can be found in the ACF Bulletin 236. UNSW’s winning last round result coming from board 8, who was a last-minute fill-in from Somerset College, is priceless. Jacob Edward’s account of his team’s mirth and merriment, with a bit of chess thrown in, is well worth the price of admission.

    The 2004 event was talked about on Chess Chat but I couldn’t find any results.

    I’ve only today read the discussions on the event from 2003/04. The amount of passion that this event generated is hard to believe today. The comments from Jenni Oliver, Kerry Stead, Paul S, Cat and others showed that the 2003 event was taken very, very seriously, for many different reasons. You can’t buy this type of enthusiasm. Go back to Chess Chat 2004 and have a look. The Drongos versus the Sheilas, priceless!

    So what happened?
    And Australia is one of the very very few countries that does not have a Team Ch./national league!
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  3. #3
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    Thanks for your input Michael. It got me to thinking!

    2023 will be 20 years from the last Australian Teams Championships. Even the Great Eastern Brood of periodical cicadas comes out every 17 years! Yes, it is 2 years until 2023, and no, 2023 is not a prime number, but I digress.

    Titles:
    Australian Rapid Play Club/Teams Championships

    8 players (2 or more must be female) – 6 rounds of FIDE Rapid rated games. (is 3 per day rapid rateable?)
    Dates: Saturday and Sunday. A weekend in off-season 2023.
    Venue: Good Holiday resort with plenty of vacancies and off-peak rates. Close to the beach so people can stay a few days after/before and enjoy a few days of family holiday.
    Prizes: Trophies for top 3 teams and Board trophies.
    Team entry fee: Up to the organizer of the event. Run it as a profit-making venture. You are bringing 80-200 people to a holiday resort in off season. Graeme and Wendy Gardiner and their team at Gardiner Chess in 2003 ran a very successful and profitable event. Is there a chess business in Australia that would like to step up to the next level and start making money out of team’s events? Check out the opposition. That’s right, no one is doing it!

    Australian Corporate Rapid Play Teams Championships - ACF rapid rated.
    4 players – 6 rounds of ACF rated games.
    3 players MUST work for the company name nominated. The fourth can be a strong player bought at online auction from a pool of Australia’s best players. Do I play for my club which charges $3 per night playing fees and cannot afford to pay me for the weekend? Of do I play for Denny Crane’s team and get flown to the venue in his Gulfsteam? How many top line juniors go on to work for Legal, Accounting, IT or Medical businesses? Heaps. In Brisbane alone I have written down a list of 15 without too much thought. And they will possibly be playing against people they played against 10-15 years ago - and just as rusty! It could be a reunion of sorts. They only have to find 2 other players in their firm and buy in the hired gun to make it four. The hired gun will probably be tax deductible!
    The two events can be held at the same time in the same hall. Not only will there be the usual king hunting but probably a bit of head hunting as well!

  4. #4
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    "8 players (2 or more must be female)" ... Interesting.

    Allow me to propose one "Female board" and one "Junior Board" with still of course eight boards.

  5. #5
    CC Grandmaster ER's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kerry Corker View Post
    Graeme and Wendy Gardiner and their team at Gardiner Chess in 2003 ran a very successful and profitable event. Is there a chess business in Australia that would like to step up to the next level and start making money out of team’s events?
    Gardiner Chess in its present form!
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  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by MichaelBaron View Post
    And Australia is one of the very very few countries that does not have a Team Ch./national league!
    Is there an interclub competition in Victoria? There's none in Qld, although there was a successful one (the Singer Cup) for many, many years. It seems that whatever affected state interclub events has also caused the demise of the national one.

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    People are too busy nowadays to travel from Redcliffe to Ipswich on a midweek night over a season of maybe 8 to 10 rounds. The reality is that computers make people more efficient, so they have to work more hours, if that makes sense! Our very small national OTB players pool seem to prefer weekenders. From a business point of view, a state or a city teams event run over 4 Sundays (one per quarter) would help to strengthen clubs and make them more of a local entity - think "The Dolphins" footy team here in Redcliffe. It is not unusual to get 100 players for a weekender and that seems good. However when you consider that South Australian Chess Association had about 240 members in 1890 (I think I saw that in Trove) - maybe the individual player event is not the best way to go. On those rough figures, I am guessing SACA should have 3 to 4 thousand members by now. Remember - 8 track was better than cassette. Beta was better than VHS. Clinton was better than Trump. Which one did the public chose to go with?

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kerry Corker View Post
    People are too busy nowadays to travel from Redcliffe to Ipswich on a midweek night over a season of maybe 8 to 10 rounds. The reality is that computers make people more efficient, so they have to work more hours, if that makes sense! Our very small national OTB players pool seem to prefer weekenders. From a business point of view, a state or a city teams event run over 4 Sundays (one per quarter) would help to strengthen clubs and make them more of a local entity - think "The Dolphins" footy team here in Redcliffe. It is not unusual to get 100 players for a weekender and that seems good. However when you consider that South Australian Chess Association had about 240 members in 1890 (I think I saw that in Trove) - maybe the individual player event is not the best way to go. On those rough figures, I am guessing SACA should have 3 to 4 thousand members by now. Remember - 8 track was better than cassette. Beta was better than VHS. Clinton was better than Trump. Which one did the public chose to go with?
    I agree about travel difficulties (especially for those players relying on public transport). However, a state interclub could be (and was being) played at a central venue (like a weekender) to avoid that problem. An Australian interclub would have even worse problems with travel, unless it was completely online.

  9. #9
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    In Sydney 20 years ago there was the Sydney western suburbs weekly tournament. If regionals like this were everywhere with the geographically-close regional winners playing each other knock-out style. Then eventually there would be a state champion team and even a national winner.
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  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kerry Corker View Post
    The 2004 event was talked about on Chess Chat but I couldn’t find any results.
    There's some results on the Club Bullwinkle website: http://www.clubbullwinkle.com/2004-aust-clubs-teams-ch/
    Also lots of other resuls from other teams tourneys over the last couple of decades under the Tournaments tab.
    So what's your excuse? To run like the devil's chasing you.

    See you in another life, brotha.

  11. #11
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    That's a great idea! Have a teams’ season for say 3 months, with the regional winners converging at the end of the 3 months for a final. All OTB. Then the state winners can either converge OTB somewhere, or play online. As long as something concrete gets going. That way your club can have some guest speakers coming in for a couple of sessions before the season starts. More employment for the titled players. Of course, the clubs still charging about half ($3) a cup of coffee will have to go for lesser stars. And that's where I come in! Only joking! I want a full cup, not a half cup!
    And have a national paid organiser. More paid employment for chess organisers. I think Mexico City has more people than Australia. We need to work as a team. One National Coordinator who comes up with a National Teams Calendar with results posted next day. Each club has a Teams Organiser who works with the National Teams Coordinator.
    Just off the top of my head, David Esmonde would be a perfect candidate, given his team’s performance (there’s that word again!) in running the Australian School Teams Championships 2020. Paid properly of course, none of this, “Can you do it for free because we only charge $3 a night”, garbage.
    Chess needs a season. The cricket season is now about 500 days per year, 28 hours per day, somewhere on the planet. Crazy thing is it is working gangbusters. Team v Team.
    Looking back through Trove, before say 1920, club nights seemed to be some sort of swiss or handicap event. When they went outside the club, it was all team’s events played either by telegraph, radio or catching a train from Brisbane to Toowoomba for instance. The state titles were a swiss or round-robin. On my CAQ Records 17.0 spreadsheet I am currently compiling a comparison between yearly population starting 1890, State membership, Club membership and tournament entries. I will only have Qld. data to work with. I will bet my bottom dollar that as soon as weekend tournaments took over from matches, you will see a big drop off in players/members compared to relative population.
    We all know the cash cow of any state association or body running it, is primary and high school interschool competitions. You guessed it. It is a teams’ event. They do run individual events but with about 20% of the players.
    Sorry for the long rant, but your idea is a great alternative to mine.

  12. #12
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    Thanks for that. I will check them out.

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kerry Corker View Post
    The 2004 event was talked about on Chess Chat but I couldn’t find any results.
    1st UNSW 35
    2nd Bullwinkle 29
    3rd Gold Coast 22.5
    4th Suncoast 9.5

    From ACF Bulletin 285.

  14. #14
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    Thanks for that. We just doubled the rich history of Australian Teams Chess Championships. 2003, 2004 and.....

  15. #15
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    Australian Teams Championships 2004
    Venue?

    UNSW NSW - Uni of NSW + ACT Uni?
    1st 35

    1 Zong-Yuan Zhao 1st B1
    2 Justin Tan 1st B2
    3 Ronald Yu
    4 Michael Lip 1st B4
    5 Michael Yu 1st B5
    6 Shannon Oliver 1st B6
    7 Jessica Kinder 1st B7
    8 Pattama Songkhunawey

    Club Bullwinkle, Queensland
    2nd 29

    1 Jonathan Humphrey
    1 Anastasia Sorokina
    2 Jacob Edwards
    3 Nik Stawski 1st B3
    4 Konrad Ubel
    4 Kieron Olm-Millligan
    5 Karina Mowles
    5 Michael Van Pelt
    5 Ben McPhee
    6 Jessica Disteldorf
    7 Luthien Russell
    8 Regina Grenfell

    Gold Coast, Queensland
    3rd 22.5

    1 Stephen Solomon
    2 Phachara Wongwichit
    3 Toshi Kimura
    4 Bernie Saavedra
    5 Alex Jule
    6 Ric Kaspar
    7 Ingrid Thompson
    8 Molly McGarity 1st B8

    Suncoast, Queensland
    4th 9.5

    1 Otto Mehltreter
    2 Paul Summers
    3 Jack Pintarich
    4 Nevenke Clarke
    5 Derek Jeffries
    6 Bob Goodwin
    6 Matthew Smith
    7 Rebecca Bleney
    8 Wendy Coghill


    What happened to Anastasia Sorokina who played Board 1 for the almost all-powerful Bullwinkle team?
    What happened to Luthien Russell from Toowoomba, I think? She was a very promising player.
    I think there were about 13 females out of about 38 players. Reverse discrimination to encourage more female players worked very well last century.
    My local club has about 30 players per night – all male.
    Thanks to ACF Bulletin 285 and Club Bullwinkle homepage. The ACF Bulletins are proving to be a great source for our history.

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