The glamorous side of chess isn't immediately apparent at the NSW Rapid Play championship where I mount my professional comeback. The auditorium of the Ryde-Eastwood Leagues Club is predominantly filled with older men and a few chubby prodigies, while nearby, wizened pensioners jangle coins into pokie slots and inhale the stale, smoky air. Only a handful of people are female, including someone's mother, two entrants and the tournament director. What did I expect? Opponents saying "grr" instead of "check"? Cheerleaders dressed as rooks?
More in Bashing the Bishop.
In case you missed it, here is an earlier chess item in the SMH's Radar section.