There have been 11 different Sydney CBD venues in the last 40 years. 1999 saw 68 at Burwood, 2001 - 58 at Parramatta. Entries at Ryde-Eastwood 2002 - 2006 were 81, 72, 69, 45, 47. The solution is not easy with no permanent chess centre - 11 evening rounds as in the 20th century rather than afternoon rounds in the 21st century, a less crowded NSW calendar, state membership a requirement to be rated, a central venue, personal invitations to the leading players, a major sponsor and nine months planning are some ideas.
OK firstly, yes, that's exactly how it's printed so I'm guessing the column is a victim of some bad editing by an SMH staffer. But secondly, no, no way I support evening rounds. Bad idea Pete. As for a chess centre, we're not going there again, are we?