Saturday, April 25, 2009

Aussie Chess on TV

The April 1974 issue of "Chess in Australia" magazine has a report entitled, "Interstate Chess Match by Television". By TV? I can't believe it.

CIA reports that the 4-board match was between Sydney's St. George Leagues CC versus Melbourne's Ormond Chess Club. The event "was a T.V. first for Australia and, no doubt for the world", the CIA said. In board order, the participants were as follows (first named player is Sydney): John Kellner v Les Irving; Narelle Kellner v Doug Simmonds; Colin Burnes v Spiro Harris; and John Stirling v George Gallanis. The last two were ages 14 and 15 respectively.

St George won the match.

And speaking of TV and chess, the same issue of CIA has an item about a so-called "Superstar Open Weekend Congress" in which Peter Parr is described as NSW State Champion (in 1968) and, wait for this, as a "T.V. personality". How the hec did that happen?

Much later in 1974, in the November issue we find an ad for a book - "The Australian Chess Championship 1974". Does anyone have a copy of this book that they want to sell? It sounds like an interesting one. It apparently features a history of Aussie chess written by Mike Winslade, a section on the system of Australian Master Points written by John Hanks and a study on Australia's top players at the time.

If you've got a copy to sell, email me.


Anonymous said...

The lengthy television series with John Kellner, Max Fuller and Peter Parr was very successful throughout the Match of the Century Fischer- Spassky in 1972.

We picked up the cables at lunch time, analysed in the TV studios and presented the games on television Australia wide for the duration of the match.

The following have the Life time title of Australian Master (subject to confirmation from ACF records)
1956 J.Hanks, 1960 J.Purdy, 1967 D.Hamilton, 1968 A.Flatow, 1971 W.Browne, 1971 M.Fuller, 1971 T.Hay, 1973 R.Jamieson.

Note: I have one only copy (not for sale) of the 1974 Cooma Australian Championship – ACF $40 Life Membership etc.

Peter Parr

TheOtherKGBFiles said...

Amiel, I've also got a copy of the 1974 Aussie Champs tournament book (also not for sale) & on my blog have a photo that I know I have mentioned to you in the past - the one with the caption of Lloyd Fell as a veteran (yes, in 1974!).