Wednesday, October 15, 2014

THOUGHTS ABOUT THOMSON CHESS CLUB

Thomson Chess Club is open to all players from age 7 and beyond, however we have seen declining numbers from adult players over the last 6 months. As convenor, I would have to make some hard decisions over the future of the club sessions.

With the convenience of playing over the Internet, it is not a surprise that most adults are beginning to shy away from over-the-board chess. So far the main interested group of chessplayers is the Bulldog team made up of mainly Filipino expats. I laud them for their enthusiasm in wanting to play wherever they can, whenever they can. Such passion existed amongst our local players years ago but sadly with the shift in emphasis on age-group events, the adult scene has been neglected.

Though we as organisers try hard to entice the adults to return to club sessions by providing decent playing conditions, it is hard to content with busy schedules, priorities on other interests and lack of motivation on one's part to play chess for its sake.

Therefore I am contemplating limiting the club sessions to only 30 Friday nights next year. These sessions shall be extended 1030pm latest (pending the CC Management Committee's approval) in order to allow the players time to finish the league games if we start at 8pm sharp. I shall be broadcasting details of the new league next year during the Club Championship on January 25th 2015. If there is still little interest then, I may continue for 2015 but cease the club sessions altogether come 2016 unless there are interested parties willing to take over the running of the club.

2015 LOCAL CHESS CALENDAR


I've made this 1 page image of the 2015 Local Chess Calendar which I think will be useful for players wanting to know what's happening for next year.

The information is current as at 11 October though there are notable missing events such as:

Public Service Star Games (normally in March)
Queenstown Age-Group (normally in April)
TCA Junior Chess Championships (held on Good Friday)
Queenstown Club Championship  (normally in June)
5th Patrick Tay Chess Challenge (normally on 2nd week July)
Queenstown Open Championship (normally end August)
Teck Ghee CSC Community Chess Championships (normally September)
Toa Payoh West Championship (normally in 1st week December)

Cairnhill CC is undergoing renovation and will not be hosting events till further notice from their convenors.

The Thomson Chess Fiesta is shifted to March 26 to make way for the Asian Schools' Championships, inevitably so due to the low participation rate from the adults.


Monday, September 22, 2014

2ND TECK GHEE CSC COMMUNITY CHESS C'SHIPS


2 students, Naython and Isaiah took part in the U10 section of the above tournament. Naython finished 3.5 pts while Isaiah took 2nd place ( 2nd from right in photo) with 6, losing only to Zeke Ng who won. I am very pleased to see Isaiah finally breaking into the 6 pt scoreline, spending his time to find better moves and translating them into winning games. Naython can learn something from this I'm sure. 

I've observed many who brought game cards to play while waiting for the next round to start. Isaiah was quietly tucked in a corner reading his opening notes and preparing for the next opponent. The photo above tells you who has spent his time wisely. 

My long-awaited sabbatical comes in a week's time and looking forward to preparing materials for my students in the upcoming National Age Group in December, as well as those going for the 1st Johor International Open. 

Wednesday, September 3, 2014

2014 INTER SCHOOLS

 RGPS mustered 2 U11 teams and 1 U9 team for the 55th National Inter Schools' Team Championships at Rulang Primary on 31 August Sunday.


The Team 1 comprises P5s  Loh Xin Yin, Isabelle Chiang, Emily Hu and Stephanie Tan with Joyce Ng (P4) as Board 5.













While Team 2 has Jessica Chan, Deania Duan, Natalie Tan and Shannon Ooi (the only P4) with Cleo Ng on Board 5.



Elizabeth Lek, Mak Wy En, Alexis Ang, Lim XuanQi and Iness Kuma made up the U9 













The U11 teams fared averagely scoring 11.0 to 11.5 pts against the fancied opponents like Nanyang Primary, Northland Primary. However, they emerged 2nd and 3rd in the South Zone with SCGS taking 1st place. The U9 girls were South Zone Champions ahead of Overseas Family School. 


The girls' were generally disciplined and well behaved throughout the competition though they could have fared better with more practice time on their own. In view of that, their performance was satisfactory. Hopefully we can get a new crop of P3s who can be motivated further to push for top honours as I'm sure there's no lack of intellect and talent in RGPS.

The South Zone U11 prize winners
 
The South Zone U9 Champions!

Thanks go to Ms Shahina and Mdm Lim for chaperoning the girls while I was at the Tournament Hall. As we wind down the CCA curriculum, congrats to the girls on their achievement! Well done









Wednesday, August 13, 2014

THOMSON CHESS CLUB SESSION AUGUST

For the remaining weeks in August, the Club shall be open and welcome all schoolchildren who wish to come Fridays from 730pm to practice and warm up before the National Inter-Schools competition on 31 August.

We should be able to cater up to 40 players, of course the equipment is supplied at a first-come-first-served basis, priority given to members. Please bring your own chess clocks if you fear that they are given out. We will have enough sets to go around.

See you all Friday!

Address:                  3rd Floor Classroom
                                Thomson Community Club,
                                194 Upper Thomson Rd
                                Singapore 574339

Directions:  http://www.streetdirectory.com/sg/thomson-community-club-cc/194-upper-thomson-road-574339/9151_101829.html

Tuesday, August 12, 2014

AFTERMATH

I think Nigel Short sums it pretty much in this short interview he gave to the local paper about the state of affairs that had occurred in the concluded FIDE Presidency Elections:

http://www.vgtv.no/#!/video/86186/sjakklegende-det-som-skjedde-i-dag-er-en-stor-tragedie

The sad fact is that the demon they were trying to exorcise is apparently mainly due to their past misdeed of breaking away from FIDE and creating the PCA to further their own interest. With the series of events from 1994 leading to the downfall of Campomanes, the void was filled in 1995 by Kirsan and since then the chess world has not seen the light of day.

In a certain way, the situation parodies what happens in the current local chess scene, where it is near impossible to upseat the incumbent owing to the rules that govern the electoral process. Membership is controlled and therefore no one can get a fair shot at it. Therefore, it would not be surprising to hear rumours that a new world body may be born should the disgruntled supporters of Team Kasparov decide that FIDE is beyond redemption. However, in Singapore this would not happen mainly because there is simply no one willing to take up the mantle to further the cause of chess for the betterment of posterity.

Now that all bets are off for the Kasparov Chess Foundation to invest further in chess for schools program here, we will have to fall back on our own resources to get things moving. The malaise that will follow for the next 4 years means that there is little hope of expecting positive changes in the chess world that can impact the way the authorities see the game here.

Nonetheless, I applaud Kasparov for taking a year off his life for this campaign and I hope he will continue his quest to bring back civility into the chess world, if not in FIDE, then through his own organisation. He will need to redeem himself of his past misdeeds which sadly haunted him on 11 August. Perhaps now, the scores are settled and a new day beckons. Hopefully, we get to see the same here in Singapore.