The Ergas
training tournament for Australia’s most talented juniors held at Box
Hill Town Hall last week finished in a three way tie between Vincent
Suttor, Jason Hu and the 13-year-old Junta Ikeda. All three have
already represented Australia at World Age Championships in the past
couple of years.

As expected, the kids walked all over the
adults.The best finishing adult, David Hacche, in theory the top seed,
came in equal fourth by winning his last game against 13-year-old
Angela Song, thereby costing Song a share of first place. Even this
would not have been an enormous upset – Song is already tipped as a
likely member of the Australian team for the 2008 Chess Olympics in
Dresden.

On a more downbeat note, the latest world rankings have
Australia down to 52nd out of the 180 (approx) members of the World
Chess Federation, FIDE. It didn’t help that in 1991 the USSR split into
15 chess powerhouses but, even so, the chess players always prided
ourselves on being ranked higher than our soccer counterparts! So we
are hoping the juniors kick on sooner rather than later.

Chess hack Stephen Mayne writes:

Ian
and his wife Cathy are off tomorrow to Argentina to cover the World
Championship for various European publications. You might even see some
reports in The SMH if they deem it newsworthy enough. Isn’t it
interesting how our greatest chess player over the past 20 years makes
a living from being a player, coach and reporter all at the same time.

Incidentally,
the shadow State Minister for Sport and Recreation presented the prizes
on Sunday and we’ve also been contacted by a staffer for Labor’s
Federal member for Chisholm, Anna Burke, about the impending eviction
of Box Hill Chess Club by the inflexible leadership of the local Senior
Citizens Club.

“Just a quick note to let you know that Anna met
with members of the Box Hill Chess Club on September 9 to discuss the
issue and has written to Whitehorse City Council, and spoken to
individual councillors, urging them to help secure a suitable
alternative venue for the Club’s meetings,” wrote the staffer.

Finally,
apologies to Junta Ikeda for calling him a girl in Friday’s Crikey
Daily. Not that it was any less embarrassing for Ian Rogers to drop a
game in June to a then 12-year-old boy, rather than a girl.

Peter Fray

A lot can happen in 3 months.

3 months is a long time in 2020. Join us to make sense of it all.

Get you first 12 weeks of Crikey for just $12. Cancel anytime.

Peter Fray
Editor-in-chief of Crikey

12 weeks for $12