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Club Championship Rounds 3 and 4

The tournament(s) continued with feisty and absorbing play in Round 3. The favourites for the title, James Watson and Declan Smith, continued to show their strength with convincing wins. 10 year old Declan Mahar grabbed his chance to snatch a draw from veteran Patrick Cook, and Paul Marko mated Vipin Jyani in a messy fight. Only 3 games were played in Round 4 on the night, with the others postponed. Patrick Cook showed continuing poor form, falling to Paul Marko after going astray late in a complicated struggle, Kevin Perrin was dealt with by Declan Smith, and Jamie Brotheridge was stunned by the ever alert Declan Mahar.


First Sunday Allegro won by local Paul Dao

The event was well attended with 31 players vying for the $500 prize money, and many just enjoying a Sunday full of chess at the wonderful Ballarat Mechanics Institute. Paul managed 6.5 points out of the 7 available, only conceding a draw to Scott Stewart. He was a full point ahead of second place, Arthur Koelle, with event organiser Chris Kolak, and James Watson both on 5 points. The Under 1400 first prize winner was Peter Stickland on 4.5 points, with Julian, Sam and Jyani sharing 2nd place. See the results here..


News Update

1. Patrick receiving his medal for playing in 40 club championships and Shanaya for winning the Reserves section of the Spielvogel Memorial tournament.

Some photos from Pearl Yung’s Northern Star Kryal Castle school tournaments on 17 and 18 April. Clarendon won both Primary and Secondary events on each day. An amazing event with around 200 children competing each day.


Championships Rounds 1 & 2

There was only one real upset in Round 1: Peter Stickland took advantage of an underdeveloped Patrick Cook who had gone pawn hunting, and successfully attacked the uncastled black king, netting material which lead to Patrick's resignation. Round 2 went to ratings, however, with draws and adjournments, only two players are on full points - 2023 champion, James Watson, and upcoming Justin Goodison.

1. Before the start of the 1st rnd of the BCC 2024 & 2. BCC'24 Round 1


Sunday Allegro! Book your spot now Sunday, May 5th

🏰 Discover Chess in Historic Ballarat! 🌟 Greetings Chess Aficionados near and far! Step into the enchanting world of chess amidst the historic charm of Ballarat! 📅 Save the Date: Sunday, May 5th, 2024 🕐 Time: 1 pm onwards 📍 Venue: Humffray Room, Ballarat Mechanics Institute, 117 Sturt St, Ballarat.
Join us for a riveting chess experience presented by Ballarat Chess Club Inc. Nestled within the storied walls of the Ballarat Mechanics Institute, prepare for a day filled with strategic manoeuvres and thrilling gameplay. Whether you're a seasoned player or just starting your chess journey, our event promises excitement and camaraderie against the backdrop of Ballarat's rich heritage. Read below for more details and secure your place at the board for an unforgettable day of chess in Ballarat! Ballarat Chess Club Inc.
� Format: Prepare for a thrilling 7-round Swiss Tournament. ⏳ Rate of Play: Each player will have 15 minutes, plus an increment of 5 seconds per move.
🎉 Prizes: Get ready to win big with a guaranteed $500 prize pool! Additional prizes will be considered if entry fees exceed expectations
🔍 Categories: Outright: 1st Place - $200, 2nd Place - $100, 3rd Place - $50 Under 1400 ACF rating: 1st Place - $100, 2nd Place - $50
🎟️ Entry Fee: Full Members of Ballarat Chess Club: $20 Junior/Concession Members of BCC: $15 Non-Members of Ballarat Chess Club: $30 Junior/Concession Non-Members of BCC: $25 GMs/IMs/WGMs/WIMs: Free entry
📝 How to Enter: Secure your spot now by completing your entries and payments online via TryBooking at link. 🚨 Entries Close: Online entries close on Saturday, May 4th, 2024. In-person entries (cash only) close at 12:45 pm on Sunday, May 5th, 2024.
🦠 Covid-19 Matters: Your safety is our priority. If you've tested positive for Covid-19 in the 3 days prior to the event, please refrain from attending. We'll arrange a refund of your entry fee. For further inquiries, don't hesitate to contact Chris Kolak at 0425 859 903 or via email at


To all Ballarat Junior Chess Club members, parents and chess players

The chess coaching sessions for Term 2 of 2024 will resume on Thursday 18th April. As usual all sessions will be held in the Humffray Room on level 4 of the Ballarat Mechanics Institute at 117 Sturt Street Ballarat, commencing at 5.30pm.

All students who participated in Term 1 of 2024 are now invited to register and pay the coaching fees for Term 2 using the TryBooking link at . This is the only way to register and pay since PayPal, EFT or cash are no longer available. The TryBooking system enables us to collect relevant information and streamlines the administration process. More...


Begonia Open 2024

President's report, photos and games are all posted here for your perusal!


Club Championship

Dear members,
Our club championship is due to commence on Thursday 18th April (details of the tournament listed below). To help with the smooth organisation of this tournament can you please respond to the following by Monday 8th April. Please advise if you intend to play in the tournament or not? Please advise if you wish to compete in the Grade indicated by your ACF rating or if you would like to play in a higher Grade if there is a vacancy (or even play in a lower Grade, noting that if you play in a lower Grade you won't be eligible for a prize).

Club Championship Rules: This tournament is arranged in three Grades based on ACF rating. The winner of B Grade in 2023 is automatically eligible to play in A Grade, the winner of C Grade in 2023 is automatically eligible to play in B Grade. A and B Grades will consist of 12 players and be conducted as round-robin tournaments over 11 weeks. All other players will play in C Grade; using Swiss pairing with the number of rounds determined by the tournament committee based on the number of entrants. A Grade games will have a 90 minute + 30 second time control. B and C Grade games will have a 60 minute + 30 second time control. A and B Grade games will be ACF and FIDE rated. C Grade games are only ACF rated. If you have any questions, don't hesitate to contact me or another member of the tournament committee (Julian and Anna).


Spielvogel Memorial

Rounds 5-7

Round 5 saw more fighting chess, with Justin holding Jamie to a draw, veteran Patrick Cook falling to Scott Stewart, and Jordan recovering with a win over Kanishk Mahasuar. JB still leads with 4.5 while Scott, Jordan, and Paul Marko are hot on his heels with 4. In round 6, Jamie fell to Paul Marko, Scott inflicted another defeat on Bas, while Ttom Oppenheim stepped up and held Justin to a draw. Paul and Scott lead with 5/6 going in to the last round, with Patrick, Justin, and Tom a point behind. The last round, and Scott secured the title with a win over Paul, while JB grabbed 2nd after a tough win over Tom, and 3rd went to Patrick after a smooth win over Justin. Noteworthy also was another loss by Bas to junior Kanishk, and 9 year old Shanaya Guha defeating Anna Yates to take the Reserves title.

Spielvogel Memorial 2024 Champion: Scott Stewart


Rounds 3 & 4

In round 3, the always dangerous Jamie Brotheridge took down veteran Bas van Riel, while Jordan Furlong dispatched strong junior Justin Goodison, so Jamie and Jordan are quick out of the blocks with 3/3. In round 4, Jamie defeated Jordan and now leads alone with 4/4.

Rounds 1 & 2

It really is 'Chess for everyone' in the Spielvogel Memorial this year. Thirty three participants with good representation from women and juniors, both boys and girls. After two rounds, 5 players are on two points. Round Two upsets were Declan Mahar defeating Scott Stewart, and Shanaya Guha holding veteran Patrick Cook to a well fought draw. See the game here...


Rapid Play #1

28 players entered the 1st of 3 Rapid Play tournaments for the year and an exciting event ensued. At the end of the 1st night, no less than 6 players shared the lead on 2.5/3. Going into the last round, Patrick Cook and Harrison Harrison remained unbeaten and fought out a tough game, with Harrison prevailing to win the tournament with a great score of 5.5/6.


Blitz #1

A score of players entered the first Blitz tournament, with Chris Kolak taking the full 7 points, and James and Jordan trailing the leader with 5 points. See the crosstable on the Blitz page...


New Year's Blitz and Bullet Tourney

The first Saturday in 2024 was a beautiful sunny day at Lake Wendouree, and around a dozen people turned up for some OTB chess to start the year. Despite some early wind hazards blowing over the pieces, things settled down with 7 rounds of 5m +2s blitz. Only unforeseen event was Justin G got some help from a fellow dressed in black, wearing red lipstick, and soundly defeated Rob L (see picture below). James W won the Blitz with 7/7 and Chris K the Bullet, a double round robin. Thanks go to Andrew Liu for organising the event!

Chess Coaching 2024

Chess Coaching is available throughout the year. We welcome enrolments at any time from any junior chess player whether they have been part of the program previously or not.

Term Dates:

Updated soon

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Tactics Solver

Give these a go - click on More Difficult to go to ChessBase for more

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BMI venue

To all members and chess players

The Humffray Room at the BMI is now in use for all club activities. 


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For info re coaching, junior tournaments, study resources etc.. visit the Ballarat Junior Chess Club pages.

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 New to Chess?


A great site for learning the basics from a cool video, improving your chess with puzzles, and playing against QWERTY the chess computer, check out
How to write down your games - Chess notation made easy here!

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Coffee and Chess

There are some chess sets for use at the following cafes... just ask!
Racers on the lake, Frangos and Homeground, both on Sturt.
Chess is also played at Beechworth Bakery and Woowookarung lookout, but you'll need to take your own set.

Bas' Chess Columns

From April 1991 until March 1993, Bas wrote a fortnightly chess column for the Ballarat Courier. Read them here

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