View Full Version : Bob Wade Biography

06-06-2006, 08:58 AM
I received the following email this morning (as I know some of you did also). I suggested that Paul contact the ACF to obtain contact details for John Purdy and Evelyn Koshnitsky who seem the most likely sources of information.

Paul has been advised about the BB and will probably keep an eye on this thread so if anybody has any information he'd appreciate it.

Amiel, this could be of interest to you.

Briefly, I have been researching and writing a book about the chess International Master Robert Graham Wade, with his blessing and help, for the last two years. Bob was born at Dunedin, New Zealand, 10 April 1921. Bob won the New Zealand chess championship three times, settled in the UK from 1948, and twice won the British Championship. His long and distinguished career in chess has been rewarded in many ways, including the title of International Master in 1950 the award in 1979, of the Order of the British Empire (OBE) at the Queen’s official birthday party. Amazingly, he returned New Zealand to play at Queenstown this year, drawing with Grandmasters Murray Chandler and Hans-Joachim-Hecht, at the age of eighty-four!

Bob was invited to play in the 13th Australian Championship tourney, which started on VJ Day, 3 September 1945. The tournament was a 16 player round robin which lasted until 19 September 1945. Bob – the youngest player in the tournament at the time – played well and shared second place with CJS Purdy and Stefan Lazare, behind Lajos Steiner. His first round game, in particular was spectacular, winning the tournament’s brilliancy prize and causing Purdy to remark: Bob Wade walked off the flying-boat to smash the noted Leeton swashbuckler, Shoebridge, with spectacular sacrifices. It was clear that we had to deal with no kiwi, or weka—but something more in the great auk class.

I have obtained the tournament cross-table and several of Bob’s game scores from Purdy’s journal (called Check! in 1945 and Chess World from 1946) and some contemporary reports from The Sydney Morning Herald and The Wellington Dominion. However I am still missing most of the games and I would also dearly love to obtain a tournament photograph. Can anyone help me?

I have noted that Purdy referred on a couple of occasions to a tournament book, which he was in the process of producing. For instance, he wrote in Chess World, April 1, 1946, p. 52.: Tourney Book The Book of the Australian championship tourney has been delayed from various causes. However, the book will shortly appear, and for that reason we have not printed a large selection of the Australian championship games in “Chess World.” However John van Manen does not list the book in his bibliography, The Chess Literature of Australia and New Zealand, nor have I been able to locate the book from other sources. Does anyone know anything about this book, whether or not it was eventually published, where I could find a copy if it exists, etc.?

Does anyone know of other sources that I should examine, or other people that might be able to help me?

Does anyone know if it would be possible for me contact CJS Purdy’s family? It seems likely, after all, that Purdy must have had the game scores in order to write the proposed tournament book.

Or does anyone know if any of the participants of the tournament might still be alive, or if their papers are otherwise accessible? The participants – beside Bob himself – were Steiner, Purdy, Lazare, Koshnitsky, Martin Green, Harry Klass, Maurice E Goldstein, Charles GM Watson, Frank A Crowl, Aubrey G Shoebridge, Maxwell C Salm, Frank L Vaughan, Arthur C Harris, Allen L Miller and David McGrath.

Any help will be warmly acknowledged in the book of course, when it is published.

Best Regards and Thanks,
Paul McKeown
103 Nield Road, Hayes, Middlesex. UB3 1SQ.
United Kingdom.

Tel. +44-(0)7833 577451

Email. Paulmckeown_dpk@hotmail.com

06-06-2006, 10:47 AM
Thanks Dave for your help. As you say, I will keep a watch on this thread. My details are also provided, if anyone should wish to contact me directly.

Paul McKeown.

16-06-2006, 01:58 AM
Hi Oz,

Congrats. on your first three goals ever in FIFA's soccer world cup. Thought 3 a bit greedy for goal virgins, but nevertheless hope you score many more. With any chance you might later thrash a team of wingeing poms in yet another sport, something which any red-blooded Irishman would love to see!

Anyway back to the subject at hand!

I was very pleasantly surprised this morning to receive a letter from Bob Meadley. He included a tournament photograph of Sydney 1945, which included all the competitors and four officials.

Thanks Bob!

Only four of the officials were indentified by Bob M., namely A. R. de Coek and Stewart. Can anyone help me identify the other two, and can anyone give me the initials or given names for "Stewart" and let me know who he was?

I have attached a copy of the photograph to this posting.

From CJS Purdy's report in Check!, October 1, 1945, I know that the following Sydney Chess Club members officiated at the tournament: Mr. E. W. Dibley (club honorary secretary), who directed the tournament, Mr. J. A. Burke (club president), Mr. J. A. Meagher, Mr. G. F. Harrison, H. Mercer (honorary publicity officer).

Of these I can say that James Anthony Meagher was a Sydney solicitor, born in Dublin (1894 - 1975), well-known for his wit. On one occasion, two bruised and battered prostitutes sued each other for assault. The magistrate, unable to decide who was at fault, said in exasperation to the opposing solicitors: 'Surely this can be settled outside the court?' 'With respect', replied Meagher, 'in view of my client's appearance, I don't think she could possibly go another round!' - more can be found about him at http://www.adb.online.anu.edu.au/biogs/A150403b.htm.

Mr. A. R. de Coek was also a solicitor and partner of Meagher's.

Does anyone known anything about the other officials, or can anyone find a photograph, by which the remaining officials on Bob Meadley's Sydney 1945 can be identified.

Thanks for your help,
Paul McKeown.

16-06-2006, 02:02 AM
I should have identified the photographed people:
Standing, left to right: official, Maxwell C Salm, Frank L Vaughan, Harry Klass, Martin Green, Daniel McGrath, Arthur C Harris, Maurice E Goldstein, Aubrey G Shoebridge, Allen L Miller, official, Stewart; Seated left to right: Charles GM Watson, Stefan Lazare, Cecil JS Purdy, Grigory "Garry" Koshnitsky, Lajos Steiner, Robert G Wade, Frank A Crowl, AR de Coek (official)

16-06-2006, 10:45 PM
I have e-mailed the pgn file of the games from this event to Paul.

Never overlook the excellence of the ACF's games database, Ozbase, currently maintained by Paul Dunn, on our website. All the games from the tournament are there.


16-06-2006, 11:55 PM
I have e-mailed the pgn file of the games from this event to Paul.

Never overlook the excellence of the ACF's games database, Ozbase, currently maintained by Paul Dunn, on our website. All the games from the tournament are there.


Sadly, Dennis, most of the games given on OzBase for the 1945 Sydney Chess Club Jubilee/Victory/Australian Championship Tournament, are zero move blanks. The 5 that are not blanks I already have.

Paul Dunn has made a wonderful resource available and is continually improving on it, but even he can't make miracles happen.

Someone somewhere, surely, has the original score-sheets or copies of them?

I've been able to cajole people into digging out games, cross-tables, reports, photographs, bulletins from most of Bob Wade's early chess career, indeed I've even been able to get a game from the Ngaio Chess Club Championship 1939! I've gotten games from NZ tournaments 1939-48, Iceland 1947, Canada and the United States 1947, Holland 1948, Switzerland, Germany, France, 1949, etc. none of which had not seen the light of day for more than half a century. Some from the most obscure sources and unlikely people.

Sydney 1945 is proving most recalcitrant though!

Which is a little surprising, as this was the most important chess tournament ever organised in Australia up until that time. The incumbent champion was there, as were all the living former champions, the only recognised master resident in Australia at that time (Steiner), the champions of all the states except for Tasmania, the New Zealand champion and most of the rest of Australia's strong players.

C'mon Oz - I've gotten the tournament photograph now (once again, thanks to Bob Meadley), how about the missing games?

Paul M.

Tony Dowden
21-02-2010, 08:48 AM
I don't know about the Bogo-Indian but Bob Wade was both an openings authority and openings author/editor so I wouldn't be surprised if he has up to a dozen opening variatiosn named after him. For instance I think even 1.d4 d6 has been occasionally attributed to Wade.

I do know of at least one 'Wade variation' in the French Advance as I played it a few times myself about 20 years ago. It goes: 1.e4 e6 2.d4 d5 3.e5 c5 4.c3 Qb6 5.Nf3 Bd7 with the idea of ...Bb5 and swappng the 'bad' bishop. The line is OK but Black has other options that are more dynamic.

I think there's also a 'Wade variation' (maybe also called the Petroff variation?) in the King's Gambit stemming from Fischer-Wade (Vinkovci, 1968). It goes 1.e4 e5 2.f4 Nf6 3.fxe5 Nxe4 4.Nf3 Ng5 the game in question continued 5.d4 Nxf3+ 6.Qf3 Qh4+ 7.Qf2 Qxf2+ 8.Kxf2 and Fischer outplayed Black in the ending.