Here I am in sunny Brissy. And what a day to arrive. History was made when, for the first time in a decade, IM David Smerdon scored a much conveted GM norm. He achieved the feat by vanquishing FM Xie in what looked to be a prepared line.
In the post mortem, Xie was gracious enough and was the first to congratulate Smerdon on his achievement. Their struggle was awesome and so mersmerised the crowd. But, and this is always something I am very proud to witness, is the ever enduring humility of these top players. It's very nice to see them analyse with each other and to reveal secrets and patzers like myself couldn't even begin to contemplate.
I should mention that Smerdon's achivement was not lost on the local paper, The Courier Mail. Smerdon, as well as up-and-coming young powerhouse Moulthun Ly, rated a mention. Never mind the factual error.
Lastly, it's nice to meet a few folks here. And I must thank Mr Malcolm Pyke. Despite having been traumatised by an apparently over zealous security guard at the hostel, where we are both staying, Malcolm did manage to find the best shower facilities. You sort have to use a compass in this labyrinth of a place. But - there it was, all comfy and excellent water pressure. Thanks mate.