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  1. #436
    Premium Member ER's Avatar
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    For Approval

    Final text has been sent to my interviewee for approval. It's a beauty and I really loved working on it. It most probably will be published in two parts. More details soon!
    You are reminded that this interview will be the first of the "Meet the Administrators" series!
    Last edited by ER; 31-03-2010 at 03:08 PM.
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  2. #437
    Premium Member ER's Avatar
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    There are some people amongst Chess administrators in Australia that personify the hardships of its development. Chess as sport, game, art, science or whatever you might call it owes a lot to these people who have sacrificed lots of their time, efforts and, as in our case money, just for the purpose of “improving the administration so that chess players had more and better tournaments to play in. To encourage growth (numbers and strength of players)of the game I love“ G.H. March 2010. Our interviewee in today’s project combines all of the above qualities and aspirations having served Chess in this country from the highest echelon of Federal and State administration, to the very successful tournament organiser and to that of just another Chess player like you and me. Ladies and gentlemen meet our very popular South Australian ex ACF President Mr George Howard.




    Did you grow up in Chess playing surroundings?

    My father played chess but I learnt the moves when 14.

    How long did it take you to beat dad?

    The first time I won was about three months after he taught me - about 6 months later I was winning all the time and we stopped playing chess.

    How much support did you have from your family?

    My parents were very supportive of me playing chess but I never had lessons / coaching.

    When did you first realise that Chess was going to play a part in your life?

    When I found I entered another world when playing chess.

    How did you manage school studies and Chess playing and training?

    One must get ones priorities correct - chess playing was ALWAYS more important to me than school studies

    Who were your Chess idols when you started playing serious Chess? who are your favourite players now?

    Capablanca was my idol and still is. Of the modern players Kasparov impressed me in Bled not only obviously with his chess but his presence as a human being - he has incredible charisma. Of the aussie players Ian and Darryl are my favourites for differing reasons.

    Who was your first Chess mentor?

    Evelyn Koshnitsky and the chess master at Marion High School.

    Who do you think is the most influential Chess player of all time?

    My understanding of chess history/politics is not that good but Capablanca and Fischer both brought chess to the public in a way other chessplayers have not.

    The strongest?

    I'm not strong enough of a chess player to even attempt a reasonable judgement on this question.

    The one whose playing style you have been inspired by and have tried to adopt?

    Capablanca

    The one that you always wanted to meet?

    Morphy or Capablanca

    Of the Chess personalities you have met, and I presume they are many, who impressed you most?

    Evelyn Koshnitsky for her energy charm wit and honesty!

    Who, according to your opinion is Australia's most promising young player?

    Bobby Cheng.

    Favourite Australian Chess Players?

    Of the aussie players Ian and Darryl are my favourites for differing reasons.

    Can you be more specific? What are those reasons?

    I saw first hand Ian's fantastic leadership skills in a team situation and his apparent calmness under pressure when all around him (in a team environment) was crumbling.
    Darryl is a very honest funny bloke.


    Did your involvement with Chess administration had an effect on your performance as a player?

    Most definitely in a negative way - that was probably because I was so heavily committed both in time and emotional energy.

    Main reason(s) of your decision to be involved in Chess administration?

    To improve the administration so that chess players had more and better tournaments to play in. To encourage growth (numbers and strength of players)of the game I love.

    To be trusted and voted as President of ACF you must have had won the respect of all (or at least the majority of ) State representatives of the whole country. Did you enjoy that support and respect throughout your presidency tenure?

    My Presidency was a "big picture" presidency - not everyone was a "big picture" person but I believe the ACF Council was supportive of my intentions as it was obvious I was trying for major movement which probably would not work but was worth the try.

    (Researching material for this interview I 've found that George Howard’s presidency coincided with a very turbulent period of Australian Chess Politics. Introduction of this very Chess Chat Forum in its present form, its origins and transformations, the tense exchanges amongst chatters, (some of them make my [always justified] occasional wobbly chucking look like baby dummy spitting) the emergence of new protagonists, the Mt Buller affair).

    What are your recollections and feelings now about those dramatic events? Have they left traumatic experiences? Have they influenced personal relationships? Were they treated as just another crisis at the office? Are you happy today with the way you handled those situations then or you would you follow another line of action today?

    TO BE CONTINUED
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  3. #438
    Premium Member ER's Avatar
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    The George Howard Interview Part 2

    PART II

    (Researching material for this interview I 've found that George Howard’s presidency coincided with a very turbulent period of Australian Chess Politics. Introduction of this very Chess Chat Forum in its present form, its origins and transformations, the tense exchanges amongst chatters, (some of them make my [always justified] occasional wobbly chucking look like baby dummy spitting) the emergence of new protagonists, the Mt Buller affair).

    What are your recollections and feelings now about those dramatic events? Have they left traumatic experiences? Have they influenced personal relationships? Were they treated as just another crisis at the office? Are you happy today with the way you handled those situations then or you would you follow another line of action today?

    Mate! This could take me hours to answer.
    I took on organising the Aus: Open , Junior and funding the Schools Teams finals with about 4 months notice. If the Open had succeeded we could conceivably become part of what became the world Grand Prix - i thought kids would love the place and my feedback was that they did but without the attractions of a big city. I eventually got a fantastic team from Adelaide to help run the Events - they were very supportive and I love them all.
    One of the organisers I recruited from another state I have not talked to since the events and I will NEVER acknowledge his existence.
    There were many requirements placed on me on where I could use the sponsors money - I had to bring in the Italians and pay their costs - I had to meet costs etc placed on me by the particular location of Mt Buller. I took advice and my own particular preference was to have a massive prizelist and small entry fee.
    Would I undertake the Mt Buller project again - most definitely but only if I had 2 years to organise it. One particular person still owes me money from the massive number of kids he entered - it is just too distressing to chase him for it. Yes I personally did lose a lot of money - I kept spending money as it was necessary to have great tourney's. If I had 2 years to organise it I would firstly spend a month or so organising a good accounting group to help run the finances.
    Organising the tournies - the aftermarth for me was a massive clinical depression for some time but I came out the end - again with the support of great Adelaide chess friends.
    I also tried to bring the Olympiad to Australia specifically Adelaide. I went to Bled (chess Olympiad) with a staffer from Australian Major Events.
    We spoke to many people and we wrote a submission which made it as one of three submissions to SA Cabinet that year for major funding request (1 million dollars out of total cost of approximately 10 million dollars for a Chess Olympiad). None of the three submissions were approved by the SA Cabinet.
    So NO the things I tried as President were not just another day at the office - I put ALL my emotional energy into trying to get things happening.
    Would i try these two and other things again - yes but with hindsight differently.
    Would I ever recommend someone be ACF President - yes definitely but only if you have progressive big picture ideas - anyone can be an administrator I dont believe the ACF needs an administrator.- it needs a leader.


    To the Chess travellers like myself, who have visited Adelaide numerous times and enjoyed the beauty and the hospitality of your great city, you and your team are very much the soul of the major tournaments held there. What does success of those tournaments mean to you?

    If the players involved like the tourney like the hospitality then SACA time in organising any tourney has been worthwhile - I personally only wish to further the enjoyment of chess.

    As a South Australian, being parochial etc, what are your feelings about your State not having many representatives apart from Mark, Giang and 3-4 talented juniors- (applause for all) in their respective top lists? I mean c’mon even ACT and QLD are doing better! J What’s wrong with you guys, can’t you play chess down there? Are you counting your blessings for ACF inclusion of Tasmania and NT so you don‘t get the wooden spoon?

    There are too few people running chess in SA but those that are believe me do everything they can to foster chess - juniors well we have had a few talented players and to a certain extent its numbers and dedicated coaching for the numbers.

    Obviously, you have learned from the negative experience and cherished the positive outcomes of your ACF presidency and further official involvement! Have you ever thought, “hey that’s enough, George Howard the Chess player comes first” and give administration a miss?

    Well I am doing just that but still keeping a VP role in SACA and SAJCL although administratively others have taken control - I am sometimes asked for advice other times I give it and the SA folks are gracious enough to listen.

    Are you a perfectionist?

    Me a perfectionist? Definitely not - a worry wart perhaps perfectionist no.

    You seem to be very choosy in terms of picking the best possible venues to stage your tournaments in Adelaide. As for your team from the absolutely lovable ladies who run the canteen (I am personally in love with ALL of them) to the very efficient organising team you guys look like you have practiced all your moves! The tourneys run smoothly from the opening to the closing ceremonies! How do you do that?


    SACA has a VERY tight group who dont argue and have had for at least a decade - we dont argue just get on with what we have to do to run a successful tourney. If someone really wants to do something in a particular way based on mutual respect we go along with that individuals wishes. Even in the Chess Centre we are taking steps to introduce quick warmth in the middle of winter so it will be comfortable. The problem is although SACA has accumulated money we dont know with any certainty how long our lease will continue so massive expenditure is unwarranted.

    Who was the originator of the (in)famous “People who ask how many players have entered the tournament will be shot” sign?

    I think it was Bill AS but Roland encouraged him and used his expert caligraphy to produce the sign - I think Chucky had an input as well!:lol:

    We are in the end of March (beginning of April when this interview will be published) and no announcement has been made for the major Adelaide tournament for 2010. Are we expecting any surprises?

    We will have a Cat 4 tourney "Lidums Checkmate Weekender" to be held at the Chess Centre in place of the Freytag. The Chess centre will be made very comfortable with extra heating and a full canteen serving the usual high class snacks people have come to expect from the old Freytag Tournies. The prize list will be similar to previous years with conditions available for Titled players. Bill Anderson Smith the SACA Tournament Director will be attending The Doerbel and SIO so he will have full details and will be spruiking the tourney.


    How are you going with the Juniors Programme? Of what I have seen you have some great kids there who apart from their strong playing ability, they also behave well! How do you keep them under control?

    A cattle prod and stern looks from our DOP's are generally enough.


    Suppose you had the absolute power of control in the Australian Chess Scene for one year or for another term as the ACF president. Name two of the most important things that you would change! I presume the benefit of hindsight particularly in your case would be rather helpful here!

    I would make the ACF Council meetings public except for matters of commercial confidentiality or matters that could be construed as libelous.
    I would put FULL focus into obtaining government assistance (funding) for chess in whatever way would work.



    Favourite sport (apart from Chess of course)

    Snooker! Footy. Soccer.

    Favourite sports team (s)

    Adelaide Crows and Watford Football Club.


    Favourite writer (s)

    Anyone in Epic Fantasy genre who can keep me buying book after book in whatever series I have started reading.


    Favourite music

    Progressive rock - eg King Crimson.


    Favourite film (s)

    Metropolis - Fritz Lang silent original.
    Count of Monte Cristo - silent original.
    Avatar.


    favourite tv show (s)

    The Bill
    Three Stooges
    ABC News



    And let's finish with an advice that you would give to the junior players!

    Chess is a game.
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  4. #439
    CC Grandmaster Basil's Avatar
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    Nice one lads.
    There is no cure for leftism. Its infestation of the host mostly diminishes with age except in the most rabid of specimens.

  5. #440
    CC Grandmaster Adamski's Avatar
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    Agreed

    Quote Originally Posted by Captain Underpants
    Nice one lads.
    Yes, excellent stuff from George and Jak!
    God exists. Short and to the point.

    Secretary of, and regularly arbiter at, Rooty Hill RSL Chess Club. See www.rootyhillchessclub.org.

    Psephological insight. "Controversial will only lose you votes. Courageous will lose you the election." Sir Humphrey Appleby on Yes Minister.

    Favorite movie line: Girl friend Cathy to Jack Ryan in "Sum of all Fears". "What kind of emergency does an historian have?".

  6. #441
    Premium Member ER's Avatar
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    Memories

    Thanks Howie and Jonathan.
    I recall Howie and myself, in our smoking days, trying to find ways to get around George's clear warning "No Smoking in the Venue and the College's Ground" is allowed.
    It was a long long walk!
    We talked the talk (for possible "naughty" solutions).
    We finally walked the walk! (Almost back to Melbourne!)
    Eclectic walked along!
    Good ole days!
    Last edited by ER; 02-04-2010 at 08:28 PM.
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  7. #442
    Premium Member ER's Avatar
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    George Howard's interview seems to be one of the most popular in terms of hits. I had kept the actual No. when I first published it but I am in NSW now and can't recall it exactly. I 'll check it out when I return to base!!
    Thanks for indexing the whole interview Kevin!
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  8. #443
    Premium Member ER's Avatar
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    Adamski is next!

    Text has been sent to my interviewee for final proof reading, editing and approval! I believe the interview with Mr Jonathan Adams (our very popular Adamski) a very well known Australian Chess personality will be published here in the next few days!
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  9. #444
    Premium Member ER's Avatar
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    Indexation

    Kevin, for indexing purposes, the interview, due to its length will be published in three parts. Thanks in advance!
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  10. #445
    Premium Member ER's Avatar
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    The Adamski Interview Part One

    Jonathan Adams, (Adamski) is one of the most popular personalities in this Forum as well as in real life - in the Sydney Chess scene in particular. He never loses his cool, he shows courtesy and respect even to people and situations he clearly disagrees with and he is always there to help and assist in whichever capacity he can. Having lived and either studied or worked in three different countries, he has a vast set of experiences in various fields, including artistic ventures as a very capable singer. Chesswise, Jonathan works hard in the administration / organisation field as well as a player whose real abilities are much higher than his present rating. I really enjoyed working on this interview. Here is the 1st Part of it.

    Did you grow up in Chess playing surroundings?

    I certainly did. I was taught chess in Dunedin, New Zealand, when I was 9 or 10 by my father, Geoff Adams, who had been Otago-Southland (provincial level) schoolpupils champion. At the age of 11 he first took me to the Otago Chess Club, where I played for the next 10 years, before moving to Wellington.

    How much support did you have from your family?

    I had a lot of support from dad. Mum was also supportive of us both going to the chess club once a week. Between us we also taught my younger brother Peter (now well-known in the New Zealand university musical scene) to play chess, and although he did not come to the club much, he retained an interest in chess and later played in a local social teams competition. We also taught (though it was mainly dad who did the teaching , I seem to recall) my 2 sisters to play, Gillian and Miranda, but neither picked up chess as an interest.

    When did you first realise that Chess was going to play a part in your life?

    Once I started playing competitively at the Otago Chess Club, initially in the Under 14 C Grade! At first, I did not do very well so started to study some of dad's chess books and took some out from the local public library, and before long started buying them (which I still do). I was able to improve and move up through the grades to the club A/B grade. I was a sometimes A grade player who often dropped to B then came back up again. An A - I guess!

    Why was there an Under 14 C Grade? Well, the OCC had a thriving younger chess community largely due to the efforts of a tireless chess worker, now deceased, named Gerald Williams, who ran a large (and noisy) primary school age chess scene with 3 ladders functioning on Friday nights. I started assisting Gerald once I was 14 for a few years. When kids left primary school a good number of them graduated to the adult club on Saturday night. Tony Dowden is one chess-chatter who came through the Gerald Williams system and moved on to the OCC and bigger things.

    Tell us a few more things about Tony Dowden from that period… Was he a talented junior indicating that one day he would be the very strong player he is today?

    Yes, Tony was one of a small crop of talented juniors we had in Dunedin in the latter 1970s. Others were Michael Freeman (now a correspondence Senior IM - see http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Michael...(chess_player)) and Tony Love. Both Tonys have played for NZ at Olympiad level.


    How did you manage school studies and Chess playing and training?

    I managed to balance them ok. I did reasonably well at most schoolwork (at secondary school I was dux, though it was not an academically strong school) and was not good at physical sports (I tried cricket, soccer and hockey) so I made some time for chess study. But never enough to be a top player! I recall playing many games inside and outside the OCC against a younger than I Robert Wansink (who has played at NZ Champs level, but infrequently nowadays) and later Tony Dowden (who has played for the NZ OLympiad team), so regular play helped me improve, but by the latter stages of these times of regular contests both of those players could generally beat me.

    Who were your Chess favourite players when you started playing serious Chess? Who are your favourite players now?

    Certainly by 1970, I was reading about and admiring Bobby Fischer's startling results against the USSR chess establishment. By 1972 he was my chess favourite. His defeat of Spassky for the World Championship and all the publicity around it put chess on the map in the West.
    Today, I admire what Magnus Carlsen has already achieved at such a young age. I also try and follow the progress of another Super-GM, Michael Adams, mainly because of his name! I see the latest New in Chess has an interesting piece on him at the back. I also admire Vishy Anand and hope he will vanquish Topalov.



    Last edited by ER; 24-04-2010 at 10:17 PM.
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  11. #446
    Premium Member ER's Avatar
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    The Adamski Interview - PART TWO

    In this second part of the Interview with Adamski we continue with general questions about his Chess upbringing, favourite Chess Players etc

    Who was your first Chess mentor?

    Clearly, dad. He always supported my chess and we still play games using GameKnot. I also started getting a little bit of coaching and advice from Graham Haase, a former New Zealand champion and a most helpful man to me. Sadly, his health is not the best these days though he retains a keen interest in chess.

    Who do you think is the most influential Chess player of all time?

    I think Fischer would be the most influential western player. He is the only westerner who has ever succeeded in putting chess on page 1 of the newspaper. From the Russian world, Botvinnik, who epitomised the Soviet school of chess, and later Kasparov (who reigned for a long time as clear number one in the world). I must also mention Aaron Nimzowitsch, for challenging the established conventions of his day, and Mikhael Tal for his beautiful sacrifices, even if not all of them are fully sound. If they get the point, that is good enough!

    The strongest?

    Although as a 1500s player my opinion does not count for much, I would have to say probably Kasparov, at his peak. Closely followed by Fischer. I also cannot discount some of the great earlier world champions such as Capablanca and Lasker. If they had had access to all the computer-based assistance that today's GMs have, I am sure they would have been even more dominant in their hey-day.

    The one whose playing style you have been inspired by and have tried to adopt?

    In my earlier chess years it was Fischer closely followed by Tal. Like most young school pupils, I liked to play aggressively, and I often played gambits. Later, once I realised my style was more positional, it would be Kasparov (though he could attack with the best of them) and Petrosian for his slow manoeuvring style.

    The one that you always wanted to meet?

    I don't think I really wanted to meet Fischer by 1972, as his personality did not strike me as a pleasant one. But I would have liked to have met Kasparov and also, going back in history, Tartakower. This latter especially so after reading David Lovejoy's very enjoyable Moral Victories novel. I also like Dr Savielly's quirky chess sayings.

    Of the Chess personalities you have met, and I presume they are many, who impressed you most?

    Most chess personalities are friendly and interesting to talk with. The one who left the biggest impression was a 70 or so year old Dr Max Euwe, former world champion and visiting New Zealand (and Australia) as FIDE President. He gave a simul and a chess history lecture and struck me as a perfect gentleman.

    I must also mention my friend Dr Jonathan Sarfati (Jono), with his amazing ability to play simultaneous blindfold chess. He must have a phenomenal memory.


    Who, according to your opinion is Australia's most promising young player?

    I would plump for the one I know best and have high hopes for (espacially once Year 12 is out of the way) - Max Illingworth. His third equal in last year's Commonwealth Championship was particularly impressive. I also expect young Anton Smirnov will go far. He showed what he is capable of in this year's SIO.


    Favourite Australian Chess Players?

    An interesting question to give to a Kiwi! Certainly, from retired players, GM's Ian Rogers and Walter Shawn Browne (born in Sydney though he lived in the USA when he became famous in chess circles) stand out. Of the current crop, the 3 GM's: Zong Yuan Zhao, Davud Smerdon and Darryl Johansen. If you had asked about New Zealanders it would be an easy chocie - GM Murray Chandler, whom I first met as a young kid wearing a Mickey Mouse t-shirt at a NZ Congress in Wellington. Second would be IM Bob Wade (RIP) for all that he achieved in chess, including his many writings. And he was born in my home town of Dunedin.


    (to be continued)
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  12. #447
    Premium Member ER's Avatar
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    Part III of the Adamski Interview

    Adamski's involvement in administration in both NZ and Australia and general plans for the future are the main themes of this Part No. 3 of the Interview. Enjoy it!


    Did your involvement with Chess administration have an effect on your performance as a player?

    I have to say - yes! From an early stage in my career, I got involved in administration and it meant I have never had the time I would like to devote to improving my game. FWIW, here is a summary of my chess admin experience:

    1. Long-time Committee member, Otago Chess Club. At times, Secretary and Vice-President.
    2. President or Vice-President of the Otago University Chess Club for most of my time there, 1976-1979. Interestingly, my colleague as either President or VP, Ross Jackson, is still active in NZ chess circles and played in the last NZ Championship.
    3. Once I moved to Wellington for work, I served as Otago Councillor on the New Zealand Chess Association, for several years. Some of the time our President was former NZ Prime Minister Sir John Marshall (RIP). Our hard working Secretary was Bob Mitchell, still active in NZ chess. Our some-time ratings officer, Rowan Wood, has recently appeared on Chess Chat and posts fairly regularly! He now lives overseas. I lived in Wellington for 11 years and during that time played first at the Wellington Chess Club, and then at the Civic Chess Club.
    4. Moved to Christchurch for work, joined the Canterbury Chess Club and promptly joined the committee.
    5. Moved to Sydney for work, joined the Manly Chess Club and promptly joined the committee. Served as Games Captain for several years which primarily meant being arbiter for club tournaments and most weeks being on of the setter-uppers of pieces, boards, clockes, scoresheets etc. I also kept the Swiss perfect records for our tournaments, along with Mr Chess Admin NSW Norman Greenwood. Attended arbiter training in Sydney with IA Gary Bekker, IA Charles Zworestine and from memory FA Lee Forace. In Manly I was part of the organising committee for the Australian Open and supporting tournaments which were run in January 2009. Following a resignation from the organising committee I joined as Communications Officer in late 2008. Fred Schuetz did an excellent job in leading this committee. The event was very successful
    6. In 2008 I started also playing at norths chess club. In 2009 I was asked by Fred Schuetz to join the organising committee for the Australian Championships and supporting tournaments from the outset, a set of tournaments which norths ran very successfully in January 2010.


    Main reason(s) of your decision to be involved in Chess administration?

    For both my initial New Zealand and Australian involvements, it was because I was asked! When I was at Uni the Otago Chess Club wanted new young blood on the committee, and I stayed on it (though no longer young blood) until I left Dunedin. The OCC asked me to be the Otago Councillor on the NZCA as the Council met in Wellington and this would save travel expenses of someone flying up from Dunedin. I filled this role for several yeras and enjoyed being involved in chess administration at the national level.

    Suppose you had the absolute power of control in the Australian Chess Scene for one year. Name two of the most important things that you would change!

    That's a hard one. For one thing, I would try to get states outside NSW to run the Australian Champs and Australian Open more often! I would advocate (I am not sure how this could be achieved though) getting a well-known personality outside the chess world at the helm of the ACF as President. This worked well in NZ when I was on the NZ Chess Association (as it was then, now NZCF) Council. We had the well-known and respected Sir John Marshall, who was keen on chess and on helping the game, as our President. I clearly recall him coming to one Council meeting which was held at my place. I don't think I'd warned my wife that a former PM was coming to our house and I recall she was quite surprised to see him visiting our home! He came to meetings whenever he could. A well-known name at the helm helps with getting funding and is very worthwhile, even if a lot of the hard administrative work is done by others on the Council, especialy the Vice President and Secretary. Sir John's many contacts were very useful.


    What are your plans for the rest of the year? What’s the next step in regards to tournament organisation?

    I am not planning any personal chess admin involvement for the remainder of this year. A major reason is that mid-year my wife and I will be looking for a house to buy, and likely in a very different area to the northern beaches (with our location based on what we can afford and likely to be in Western Sydney). So a change of chess club is very likely to occur. For these reasons I will not be part of the organising committee for the 2011 Australian Open at norths cc
    .


    (To be continued)
    Last edited by ER; 26-04-2010 at 05:41 PM.
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  13. #448
    Premium Member ER's Avatar
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    This PART IV, is the penultimate of our interview with Adamski. I hope you found it as enjoyable as I did! Final part to follow soon after this

    To Chess travellers like myself, who have visited Sydney numerous times (actually I lived there for a number of years and enjoyed the beauty and the hospitality of the great city), you and your team are very much the soul of many major tournaments held there … What does the success of those tournaments mean to you?

    Once a tournament has run successfully, and many have commented that this is the case (as with both the Manly Aus Open and the Norths Aus Champs), it leaves me with a sense that the hard work has all been worthwhile. In my case this work primarily involves IT work (many emails and Chess Chat postings) which is sometimes a bit hard to motivate myself to do as my job is also in IT. (I work as a Senior Data Modeller for Westpac.)


    Coming back to the Aus Championships and without taking away the merits of other members of the team, I'd like to add a few words about Mr Fred Schuetz’s contribution. Fred kept on working hard in the duration of the tournament and managed to offer his assistance to everyone participating! Have you worked together before?

    I have only worked with Fred for the Aus open and the Aus Champs, though I have known him through Manly cc (and now the Harbord Diggers Chess Club which has replaced Manly) and norths for a number of years now. I totally agree with what you said. Fred was the lifeblood of the organising committee for both events. Beforehand he made a huge number of phone calls to prospective players and ran our organising committees very efficiently. During the events he was always helpful to everyone as you said. I don't think either event would have happened without Fred.


    Obviously, you have learned from the negative experience and cherished the positive outcomes of your organiser / administrator’s involvement… Have you ever thought, “hey that’s enough, Jonathan Adams, the Chess player comes first” and give administration a miss?

    Often, including now! It is a source of great disappointment to me that I have played organised chess since 1969 and still only have a rating a little over 1500. I do intend to find some time to work on my chess, as I have an initial goal to get back to 1600 ACF, and a stretch goal to exceed my best rating - an NZCF one of 1666. This will require improvement in my play, especially the elimination of blunders! I would also like to play enough FIDE rated games to get a FIDE rating that is better than my ACF rating in both rapid chess and normal tournament chess. For some reason I seem to do better in rapid chess...



    What are in the plans for the rest of the year? What’s the next step in regards to tournament organisation?

    I am not planning any personal chess admin involvement for the remainder of this year. A major reason is that mid-year my wife and I will be looking for a house to buy, and likely in a very different area to the northern beaches (based on what we can afford). So a change of chess club is very likely to occur.

    Are you running a Juniors development program in the Club?

    No. As mentioned, I was involved in a similar program in my Dunedin days, but nothing formally in that area since. But I have always done what I can to encourage junior players.



    Apart from Chess, you are also a very good singer. It is not only my opinion but it reflects the reaction of all people who had the opportunity to listen to your singing in the official opening of this year’s Australian Championships at norths and in other occasions. Please tell us a few more details about your musical career!

    For much of my life I have sung in church choirs and as a backing singer in services. I am a tenor. In both Wellington and for a short time in Sydney I had a singing teacher. In Wellington I developed an interest in Gilbert & Sullivan musical comedies and sang in a choir that did G&S music called the Savoy Singers. On coming to Sydney I got involved with a group called FAMS Theatre Company and began to not only sing but also act (initially in the chorus and later in the occasional principal roles) in G&S shows. I have now done 6 shows with FAMS and last year one with a new group, the Manly Musical Society. The most well-known role I have played was the boatswain (bosun) in HMS Pinafore, and the song I sang at the Opening Ceremony of the 2010 Aus Champs, "He is an Englishman" was a boatswain song. Currently, I am still singing most weeks in church but not currently doing a show, with the pending house-buying being the primary reason.


    Religion must have played a very important role in your life… Your references to divine guidance is obvious yet discreet in your contributions to the forum. In the materialistic and highly competitive world that we live, is faith and devotion to religion hard to achieve and maintain?

    Faith is not hard to achieve. To me, it is harder not to believe in God and then account for the universe. Although I contribute to academic discussions of issues regarding faith in God and His existence, I acknowledge that most people are not going to believe in God unless He clearly reveals Himself to them. This happened to me as a 14 year-old. I knew then I needed God to fill a large void in my life. I am a Pentecostal/ charismatic Christian, which means I believe that the Holy Spirit operates in the world today and bestows His gifts on us. Yes, I speak in tongues, following an initial experience 20 years ago called the "Baptism in the Holy Spirit". For me, tongues is a daily prayer language which builds up my inner man! At the same time, as many Chess Chatters will be aware, I am a Young Earth Creationist.

    For me, my Christian faith is central to my life and leads me to serve others, including in chess admin. There have been times when there has been a clear gap in a chess committee which needs to be filled, and several times I have felt that I should step in to fill that gap. But sometimes God tells me (and my wife tells me) - no!

    Final Part to be added a bit later tonight
    ACF 3118316
    FIDE 3201457

    https://aus2020.chesschamp.net/

    In defense of Capitalism.
    Money is the cause of all evil!
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    Lack of money is the cause of all evil!

  14. #449
    Premium Member ER's Avatar
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    And this is PART V - conclusion of Adamski's interview

    Favourite sport (apart from Chess of course)

    Quite hard for me to answer. I am a sport generalist. As a Kiwi I support New Zealand in any sport! The sport I was most actively involved in was cricket, in which I was scorer (i.e. kept the score-book) for both my high school then University first elevens. I still watch cricket, at all levels, when it fits in my schedule and particularly if NZ is playing. In test cricket I support the Black Caps of New Zealand. (I am a New Zealand citizen and have not become an Australian citizen.) I do also enjoy watching the Australian cricket team as they are so good at all forms of the game - of course they have many more players to call upon than NZ does.

    With winter sports it is 50/50 between rugby union and soccer. Firstly, as a Kiwi it is hard not to get caught up in rugby union (though Jono managed it). The All Blacks are known, and largely respected, world-wide. as well as the All Blacks I support Otago (in any sport) and Otago Highlanders rugby union teams. Note that just about anyone born in Dunedin continues to support Otago teams in rugby, wherever in the world they move, but sadly they continually under-perform (especialy the Highlanders). I also follow both Manly and the NZ Warriors in the NRL rugby league competition.

    But I also lived in and around London for 3 of my early school years, including 1966 when England won the soccer World Cup. I was supporting them via telly. I went to a London school where the main clubs supported were Chelsea and Spurs and I happened to get in with the Chelsea crowd and have been a Blues fan ever since. This period has included times of demotion from the top league but also 2 EPL Championships and several FA Cups! Recently, I have also started to support Blackburn Rovers, who are captained by the New Zealand captain for the forthcoming World Cup, Ryan Nelsen. Finally, in listing the soccer teams I support, I have to include Wellington Phoenix (the only New Zealand team in Australia's A League). I played soccer on my return to Dunedin from New Zealand, but not with any ability!

    Favourite writer (s)

    Firstly, God as the author of the Bible. Others are Christian writers Bill Johnson and our own Jono. From time to time I also like to read history, the subject in which I have my honours degree.
    Regarding fiction, I am currently enjoying Brock and Bodie Thoene, who write historical novels on the Jews, one series set in the lead up to world war 2, another set around Israel becoming a state again in 1948. My great-grandmother was a Jew so you can call me a Messianic Jew (or call me a Christian).
    I also enjoy some of the more erudite British detective fiction. such as Colin Dexter's Inspector Morse novels. I enjoy watching these on tv. I also had a Jeffrey Deaver phase and particularly enjoy his Lincoln Rhyme novels.

    Favourite music

    I have varied tastes, including some contemporary and some more traditional Christian music; Gilbert & Sullivan shows such as Pirates of Penzance and HMS Pinafore, and some classical music, especially with violins involved.

    Favourite film (s)

    Ben Hur, The Shawshank Redemption , Minority Report and (though not to watch too many times) The Passion of the Christ. I also enjoy watching political thrillers, such as Tom Clancy material, with my wife

    Favourite tv show (s)

    NCIS (I don't have to think to watch it!), Yes Minister and Yes Prime Minister (the scripts are so clever!), British detective fiction, such as Morse and Taggart, which I watch with my wife.

    And let's finish with advice that you would give to junior players!

    "Mind your P's and Q's!" This was the motto of the OCC. I use it as a reminder to check that I am not falling for any one or 2 move cheapos before I move - when I remember to!! My other advice would be - enjoy your chess and don't get too downcast when you lose. It is good to remember that it is only a game, and I have lost many games!

    Adamski, thank you for your time!

    Thanks Elliott for the opportunity to let people know a bit more about me.

    It was a pleasure, till we meet again next year cheers and good luck!
    ACF 3118316
    FIDE 3201457

    https://aus2020.chesschamp.net/

    In defense of Capitalism.
    Money is the cause of all evil!
    Wrong
    Lack of money is the cause of all evil!

  15. #450
    CC Grandmaster Basil's Avatar
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    Take a bow, boys.
    There is no cure for leftism. Its infestation of the host mostly diminishes with age except in the most rabid of specimens.

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