How to set up a account and join BCC

The process to follow to set up a account and to join the Ballarat Chess Club is as follows.
Participants must be a financial member of the Ballarat Chess Club. Anybody who is not a current member or a participant in the junior coaching program can join as an Internet member for an annual fee of $20. Payment can be made on the club website by card or EFT.
Register for a account, if you do not already have one. Registration is free and happens quite quickly. This must be done before registrations for an online event close. Request to join the Ballarat Chess Club.

It is best if your username (or handle) clearly identifies you. If that is not the case then please message Rob Loveband on 0458 530 431 with your real name. For example Rob’s handle is AustraliaRob or you can email him at This is to ensure that tournament participants are Ballarat players, and that everyone knows who everyone else is.

Registrations for events will close at 7.30pm on Thursday evening. Early registrations are encouraged, but can’t be done until you have completed the steps above. Games are scheduled to start at 7.30pm. After you have registered you can go offline but you must be back online before 7.30pm. Note that can be unforgiving in the case of disconnections. If you disconnect you need to reconnect within 1 minute, otherwise you could be removed from the tournament.

News update 6/4/20- To all members and chess players

The committee of the club had a meeting over Zoom this morning and has made a number of decisions about current and future events.
In view of the current government regulations in force, club meetings at the BMI will be suspended indefinitely.
The initial trial of online events via has been very successful. That platform will be basis for our members to play chess whilst meetings at the BMI are not possible.
In addition to Thursday evening ‘meetings’ an online activity will be held each Monday at 7.30pm. It is proposed that Classic time limit events will usually be played on Thursdays and Rapid and Blitz events will usually be played on Mondays.
The holding of the Ballarat Chess Club championship will be deferred until later this calendar year. We are still hopeful of being able to hold it in a traditional fashion. If that is not possible then the committee will decide what is the most appropriate format. If it is to be held online then some new rules may be required.
Starting on Thursday 16th April, the Teters Memorial tournament will be played. There will be one game per night starting at 7.30pm with a time control of 60 minutes plus an increment of 30 seconds per move. This will be a swiss tournament over 7 consecutive weeks. Pairings will be notified in advance by the arbiter who will use Vega to make the pairings. Players will then be required to make an ‘individual challenge’ at and then notify the result to the arbiter, as soon as the game is completed. It is felt that this method will produce the most reliable pairings for a classic time limit event. Further details will be available before next week. If you would like to participate then please advise me by email by next Wednesday.
The committee reiterated that all online events will only be open to financial club members and juniors registered in the coaching program. If you are not a current financial member then you can join or pay fees on the club website at . There are no entry fees or prizes for club online events.
The committee and coaching panel have held recent meetings via Zoom. This is an industry standard program which has live chat and screen sharing technology. It can be downloaded for free at and it provides friends/families/groups an ideal way of keeping in contact during these periods of restricted movement. I have used it for family and other non-chess related meetings and it is relatively to use.
Tonight will be our first Monday online meeting. It will be another Arena event with games of 10 minutes each. You play as many games as you can complete over the 90 minute time limit. By nature the pairings for an Arena event will produce some anomalies due to flexible nature of the event. You will be able to take a break during the tournament and skip a game or 2 if that suits you. You simply re-join by clicking the Next Match button when you’re ready to be paired again.
Then on Thursday this week there will be a 6 round swiss tournament with games of 10 minutes each plus an increment of 3 seconds per move.
The Teters Memorial will start the following Thursday
If you have any questions about online chess or other club matters then please give me a call on 0418 533 517. I have listed below the process to register at again as a reference. Rob Loveband or I would be happy to assist anyone with setting up a account if help is needed. You can keep up to date with activities on the club website at where webmaster Rob is regularly updating it with what our club is up to.
Keep safe and well. Kind Regards Kevin Perrin

Ballarat Chess Club online

Monday Arena

On Mondays we will be holding a range of fun events, starting from tonight (6/4/20) at 7:30pm when we'll have a 10 minute Arena event for 90 minutes. The link is and all Ballarat Chess Club members and BCC Online members are welcome to participate. Thursday will be a 6 rd Swiss 10min + 3 sec, so hopefully one or both will suit. See you there!

Thursday Arena

Only one of the two tournaments we planned was held on Thursday as most of the 24 eventual participants piled into Arena A.

The pairing was a little haphazard, with several of the top rated players failing to getting a match. Some people played the same opponent twice (or more?). One person probably accidently left the tournament and failed to re-join, waiting for a game invite that never came.

However, there were some quallty games played considering the time controls. James Watson got the only draw against Simon, who was the eventual winner, here. Stephen Symons got the only half point that Arthur Koelle gave away in this game. Leonard took points from Patrick and Sean, propelling him into third place.

Scroll down from the results here - to see the pairings and games.

Thursday Arenas

This week we will hold two tournaments concurrently, one open entry Arena A, and one only for those with ACF rating under 1000, Arena B. Both will run for 90 minutes starting from 7:30. Please click on the link to find the tournament and Join before 7:30 (late entries okay). After you finish a game, when you're ready, click the Next Match button for another game. The results of the tournament will come up at the end of the tournament. Any games in progress at the end of the tournament will be aborted. If there are not many players in Arena B, please leave that tournament and join Arena A at any time.
Arena A - Arena B -

Coaching via Zoom &

The club is keen to resume Junior Coaching Sessions which were suspended along with club meetings earlier this month. Head coach Simon Rutherford has contacted all students and it is hoped that sessions will be able to start again shortly. If anyone else wishes to join the junior coaching sessions then please contact Simon on . Any adult player can also contact either Simon or Kevin and we will assess if there is sufficient interest in holding sessions for adult players.Read More

News update - To all members and chess players

Last week the club conducted a successful Blitz Tournament online via . The club is hoping to hold regular online events on a Thursday evening and if there is sufficient interest then possibly on a Monday evening as well. We realise it is important for members to keep their minds active and bodies healthy during this crisis.
All events will be open to club members. If you are not a current member then you can join at the club website at . There is a special category for online only members. Anyone who joins as a full member will have their new or existing subscription extended whilst the club is in recess. This will also apply to juniors registered in the coaching program.
This week we will be having an Arena event. That is a special tournament in which you will play as many games of 10 minutes each as you can complete over 1.5 hours. The winner will be the player with the most points at the end of this time. There will be 2 sections. One will be restricted to players with a current ACF rating of less than 1000. The other section will be for all other players including any with a rating of less than 1000 who prefer to play in this group. You will be able to take a break during the 1.5 hours and skip a game or 2 if that suits you. You simply click re-join the Next Match button when you’re ready to be paired again. Some events with games of a longer duration will be arranged for future weeks.
The club is keen to resume Junior Coaching Sessions which were suspended along with club meetings earlier this month. Head coach Simon Rutherford has contacted all students and it is hoped that sessions will be able to start again shortly. If anyone else wishes to join the junior coaching sessions then please contact Simon on . Any adult player can also contact either Simon or myself and we will assess if there is sufficient interest in holding sessions for adult players.
Even if you do not wish to play online you may well be interested in joining in and viewing the games as they unfold. There is an analysis facility available whereby you can try a move which has not been played in a game and get feedback from an analysis engine. Being able to look at other games as they unfold is a great feature of this platform. I should also mention that any person who joins via is able to play games on that forum for free whenever they wish and not just when we have ‘club member only’ events. Those games can be played against other members or anyone else who happens to be online in the world at that time. It is possible to ask other club members to be ‘friends’ so that is easier to have games with each other.
If you have any questions about online chess or other club matters then please give me a call on 0418 533 517. I have listed below the process to register at again as a reference. Rob Loveband (0438 530 431) or I would be happy to assist anyone with setting up a account if help is needed.
The committee would love to see our current online membership of 26 players extended. Some previous club members have re-joined and reconnected with the club and we are only too pleased to have that extended. In the meantime keep safe and healthy,

Regards, Kevin Perrin

Ballarat Chess Club online

Blitz #2 - online!

This event was played online at Simon took out first place by half a point from James, and a full point from Ruari. It was fast and furious but with no pieces flying! It was challenging for everyone playing on an unfamiliar platform, but the juniors and seniors alike all struggled through. Some didn't have a chat capability, some did but couldn't find where it was on the screen. Some joined the club but didn't click the Join tournament button in time for the first round. Whatever your difficulty, please remember that the next tournament will be on slower time controls so you will be able to have a more normal chess playing experience! Thank you to everybody for making yourselves known via Profile so your opponent could see who they were playing.
The results can be seen here on or the crosstable only on our website here.

Blitz #2 - online!

Blitz #2 Thursday 7:40pm on
7 rounds 5 minutes a side
How to join:
1. Go to
2. Join up and get a free account
3. Request to join our club =
4. If your username does not clearly identify you, please message me with your real name. My handle is AustraliaRob or you can email me at This is ensure that tournament participants are Ballarat players, and that everyone knows who everyone else is! 5.Then look in the News section to find a link for the next tournament - Registration for each event opens 60 minutes before the scheduled start. It is a 7 round 5 min 0 sec Swiss tournament If this is all new, give it a go and have some fun!

President's Report: Begonia Open 2020

The Begonia Open has been running continuously for the last 54 years - and this year was not to be an exception. 132 participants competed for the Kevin Perrin Trophy and rich prizes. Some of our local players took home a good prize and everyone enjoyed the modern facilities offered by the Ballarat Tech School. The success of the tournament in the new locale has been an encouraging pat on the back to the organising committee. Kevin, Anna, Rob, Patrick and Ben all put in many hours behind the scenes to make it happen. Several club members and family helped with setup, canteen and pack up - we're grateful to Ruby, Eef, Bill, Simon, Tom, Mike, Ian and probably others I'm missing (sorry!) for running the canteen, Harrison, Ruari and Jamie for help with the tables and chairs. There are more and thank you to you as well. Patrick has written a report so have a look at the photos and details on the Begonia Open web site, recently updated.

BCC Covid-19 Response

The Executive Committee has decided to enact a temporary cessation of chess club gatherings effective immediately until April 16th, the first night of the club championship. All Junior Chess Club classes with Simon will also be put on hold until then (more information to follow soon re Junior Chess Classes). If the situation changes and requires a further extension, we will notify members at that time. We will be in touch with members about an idea of Jasan's - an Online Chess tournament to keep us chess addicts in form while we await an amelioration to the Covid-19 crisis.

Spielvogel Results >

Kryal Castle Shield

Last year in August, Northern Star Chess held a school chess tournament at the castle and 180 students from around the state attended. Ballarat's Leonard and Justin Goodison took out 1st and 2nd places in the primary division and Mount Clear's Sean Macak placed second in the senior division. Amongst other participants were club members Thomas Wardle, Gus Tatman, Alan Cai and John McGill who all did well.
Club members also helped out arbitering the event including Bas van Riel, Patrick Cook, Rob Loveband, Mike Goodison and Nigel Block.

This year it is being held on Friday March 20 - definitely no issues with the cold this time around!

Teachers and parents should express interest either as a school or as an individual.

Everything you need to know is here!
Northern Star

Four weeks into the first term of the Ballarat Junior Chess Club attendance has exceeded our expectations. We have 15 regular students across a range of age, ability and experience. Due to the high response, the Ballarat Chess Club committee already agreed to bolster the coaching ranks, by adding Jasan and Ruari to assist Simon. The group is currently split into 2 sections (Simon is coaching the most advanced 6 students, and Jasan and Ruari are combining duties for the least experienced players), but we have flexibility to change the coaching structure as the club develops and coaching needs change. We remain hopeful more students will enrol as the year unfolds.

Ballarat Clarendon College Chess Report 2019 by Rob Bailey

It's been another tremendously successful year for Clarendon's ever growing and thriving chess club. Numerous achievement records were broken as the school qualified the most students in 2019 for state finals across all divisions in its history. The Junior School clubs continue to operate at capacity and many students are making the exciting transition to the senior club. A new intermediate league was also established at the senior club to better cater towards the diversity of skill levels of our students.
We hosted the first interschool tournament for the year on March 29. Our primary team achieved third place behind perennial rivals Candlebark and Mt Blowhard. Our two Middle Years teams were the class of the field on the day in taking first and second in front of Mount Clear and Trinity College. Jack Timms, Kalen Douglas, Thomas Lin and Mahmoud Naqeeb all scored 7/7. In the Open Secondary division, brothers Dylan and Louis led a strong squad to a close victory over Mt Clear and Bacchus Marsh Grammar.
The second hosted tournament came on June 20. Mt Blowhard repeated their fairy tale success in winning from Clarendon, only 2.5 points behind. Kanishk "the Warrior" Mahasuar, Jayden "Jaymaster" Tran, Louis "The King" Zhao, Afif "The Professional" Chowdhury, Aarnav Agarwal and Fred “hairspray” Finch all performed well for 5/7. Our Middle Years team were once again victorious with Thomas Lin and Dan Wang leading the way with 7/7. The Open Secondary division was dominated by Clarendon's experienced team, with George Yang playing exceptionally well for 6.5/7.
Our road trip tournament for the year took us back to the chilly home of Candlebark in the Macedon Ranges. The hosts outplayed everyone in the primary competition with ex-Clarendon student Om O'Carroll leading their team to victory from a gallant Clarendon in 2nd. Kanishk impressed with 6, Afif, John McGill, Aarnav, Louis and Patrick Frost got 5. Our middle years team won their division by a mere half point, with Dan “dynamic” Wang playing splendidly, winning the tournament individually with 6. Vishy Neralla, Jack Timms, Paida Ndoro and Raine "The Professor" Liu all contributed to the final score.
The last zonal tournament at Ballarat Grammar was a complete jubilant triumph for Clarendon College with a clean sweep of all three divisions, cementing more places for State Finals. The rise of John McGill was impressive, scoring 6 with Afif and veteran player James Nguyen also playing well. In the Middle Years, Oliver Finch soared to second individually, leading Dan Wang, Jessan Salazar, Harry Skene, Paida and Vishy to an emphatic team win. The Open Secondary team saw practiced pawn-pusher Ahnaf Chowdhury take second, leading George Yang, Soham Patel and Jackson Dun to a solid win over Mt Clear, Bacchus Marsh and Melton Secondary.
State Finals results were overall very pleasing. The Open Secondary team placed 9th from 27, equalling the effort from 2017. Dylan Douglas and the 'Naf Chowdhury scored 5.5/9, Sam Duthie after a monster tournament got 5/9 and Louis Douglas, Dan Wang and Iyad Khurram all battled hard for 4.5. Middle Years achieved 13th from 31 with Dan Wang's quietly calm diligence gaining him 6/9 and an almost 1000+ rating performance. He was ably assisted by Kalen Douglas, Oliver Finch and Vishy Neralla, who scored 5.
The primary team finished a noble 13th from 39 schools which is a new record high. This was only a point from Nationals qualification and the top 10. Afif Chowdhury and James Nguyen both broke the individual performance record, establishing a new mark with 6/9. Louis Zhao pitched in with 5.5 and JS player and fast rising talent Will Luo, finished on 5. Afif's fantastic focused attitude throughout the day fully amplifies his achievements in chess League this year; graduating not once, but twice into the highest group, the Rooks & Kings League. His brothers will no doubt be watching out next year!
Clarendon College also took a team of keen female players to our first ever Girls Only State Finals in Altona. This continued the tradition established by our girls who played the Lauriston tournament last year. The team finished a credible 6th from 14 schools. Aiko Moody and Paida Ndoro scored 5/7 with inspired chess performances. Julienne Salazar and Ellen Crawford scored 4 with Anushka Kalra and Adeline Tran 3.5.
Many thanks to Ben Naughton for his continued support and also to newly appointed staff member Matt Nolan for his additional expertise with senior students. We will continue to seek new avenues of improvement and ways to better meet the increased demand of student numbers. Thank you for supporting chess in education; see you over the board in 2020!

Spielvogel Rds 2&3

Round Two was a wild night: Leonard took advantage of moment of Bas' brain fog to score a win against the veteran, while Kanishk overcame Jamie with careful play after a blunder. Round 3 saw Louis beating Hossam, Justin taking the point from Chantelle, and Kalen holding Jamie to a draw. Latest round games from top four boards can be viewed here.



Read More

Spielvogel Memorial

A healthy entry of 26 participants enjoyed chess in the Humffray room - several new players also enjoyed some unrated games as well.

Round One held no surprises: all games went to ratings. Top four boards used the new DGT equipment. Games can be viewed here.


Read More

Spielvogel Memorial

The first major tournament for the year, the Nathan Spielvogel Memorial, will begin next week. Rod Jacobs is the defending champion and will have his work cut out for him in what looks to be a strong field, headed by Simon Rutherford.

Come a little early to put your name down for the tournament: registrations close at 7:30pm sharp.

Read More

Rapid 1

26 players participated in the 1st Rapid Play tournament of the year, a healthy turnout for this unrated event. Simon scored 6 of 6, a point ahead of Bas, who was a point ahead of the next four players all on 4 points.

Read More

Blitz 1

Simon scored the full picket fence followed 1.5 points behind by Bas. Leonard and Justin were top of the juniors on 4 points - very respectable!

Read More

Ballarat Junior Chess Club

In 2020 Ballarat Chess Club will formally engage FM Simon Rutherford of Central Highlands Chess to oversee the coaching of juniors at the newly re-established Ballarat Junior Chess Club every Thursday evening at 6:00pm.

The Ballarat Junior Chess Club is for players of all levels, Beginners to Advanced. Each week we will hold a lesson that is appropriate to the skill level of the children - Beginners will learn the rules of chess and how to play, progressing to basic checkmates, tactics and strategies. Intermediate and Advanced players will learn opening theory, tactics, strategies and endgames, working on improving their game, and expanding their ability to calculate and make plans. There will also be time to play friendly and competitive games and to solve stimulating chess puzzles.

Who: Anyone under the age of 18
Where: Humffray Room, Level 4 of the Mechanics Institute - the same for the Ballarat Chess Club from 2020 (Lift available)
When: Thursdays 6:00 pm - 7:15 pm
Term Dates:
Term 1 - 30th January 2020 – 26th March 2020
Term 2 - 16th April 2020 – 25th June 2020
Term 3 - 16th July 2020 – 17th September 2020
Term 4 - 8th October 2020 – 17th December 2020

$100 per term (or $15 per night). Pro-rata fees will be charged if a student commences part way during the term

All enrolled students from the same family (brothers and sisters) are entitled to a 25% discount

Students who enrol for a full term are entitled to free membership of the Ballarat Chess Club which meets at that venue from 7.30pm on the same night

Who will be coaching me?

FM Simon Rutherford, Master of World Chess Federation, Director of Central Highlands Chess, National/State champion, Australian representative. Read more about Simon here... Simon will be supported by other coaches from the Ballarat Chess Club as required.

Please fill in your details on the enrolment page, and follow the prompts to make payment.
For further enquiries about the course, contact Simon (0490 706 207

For payment enquiries, contact BCC Treasurer, Kevin Perrin (0418 533 517


Junior Club
and Move to Humffray Room

As the numbers of adult and junior players attending the club increased during 2019, we found that we were often a little over crowded in the Hooper Room on the ground floor at the Mechanics Institute.
After a trial period using the grand and spacious Humffray Room on level 4, the committee has arranged for meetings to be held in that room when activities resume on 16th January 2020.
Coinciding with this relocation, the club has re-established the Ballarat Junior Chess Club and initiated a coaching program for junior chess players. The first term of coaching will start on Thursday 30th January 2020 at 6.00 pm in the Humffray Room. Full details of this initiative can be found here.
To provide the larger venue and offer professional coaching there will be some changes to the fee arrangements for 2020. There will be a family and junior memberships available. The coaching sessions will incur a small fee to cover costs. The new membership fees are detailed here and the coaching fees here.
Any junior who enrols for a term of coaching will be entitled to free membership of the Ballarat Chess Club for that period. All club members will be eligible to compete in events with cash prizes on a no entry fee basis, with the exception of the Begonia Open. We do not know of any other club in Australia providing that to members. Any person who has difficulty meeting the coaching or membership fees should discuss the matter with Kevin Perrin the club Treasurer.
Our aim is to provide attractive and comfortable facilities for players wanting to play chess in a friendly and pleasant atmosphere. We also want to provide professional coaching for junior members to encourage them to develop their skills, enjoy the game and ultimately become members of the senior club.


The Humffray Room