The Australian Chess Championship started yesterday, the 2nd of January, at the Norths Club in Cammeray, north of Sydney. The 28 player Championship division includes 3 Grandmasters, 6 International masters and 4 Fide Masters and the first round went largely according to rating: top seed Zong Yuan Zhao accounted for Max Illingworth where Max played inaccurately to give Zhao the advantage he needed to win. On Board 2 Chris Wallis gave English GM Gawain Jones a run for his money where Wallis was attacking the enemy king but did not have enough pieces involved and eventually lost his extended kingside pawns. Aleks Wohl accounted for Doug Hamilton on board three, Andrew Bird lost to GM Darryl Johansen, IM George Xie defeated Barack-Atzmon-Simon, Substitute Gareth Charles lost to IM Stephen Solomon, Norths Club member Vladimir Smirnov defeated Eugene Schon, and Victorian Malcolm Pyke lost to IM Gary Lane.
There were not many upsets for the round: In the battle of the promising Juniors, YI Yuan v Moultoun Ly, IM James Morris lost to Andrew Brown and Laurence Matheson scored an upset draw against FM Eddy Levi.
Well... I have to head to the venue this morning ...... will update other divisions later today!