A further observation on bridge vs chess

May 25, 2010 at 8:25 pm 4 comments

I liked this:

Lloyd Fell died in Sydney last week at the age of 91. He was a leading player over several decades, winning the NSW Championship in 1963 and playing in a number of Australian Championships, and draughts champion of Queensland in the 1950s. Lloyd played in every Doeberl Cup from its inception in 1963 to 2008, coming equal first in 1978; in later years the tournament declared him a Master, thereby qualifying for free entry, in recognition of his record.

I make a point of it because obviously the person who gave most to bridge in Australia, by a long shot, was Tim Seres and my sense is that he never received close to the recognition he should have. We had in Australia one of the super best players in the world for many decades – in chess he would have been a supergrandmaster at the very least – and really, did we care???! I would love any stories about Tim being given the recognition he should have, but my sense is that acknowledgement was not nearly commensurate to what we received as a community from him. I will point out that Tim must have spent an enormous amount of money playing bridge in, and for, Australia. For decades he played everything there was to play. Phil Markey, give us an approximate figure of what that cost him, please!

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Entry filed under: thoughts on bridge.

Into the valley of death? Concluded At the five level.

4 Comments Add your own

  • 1. Peter Gill  |  June 7, 2010 at 7:35 pm

    John Brockwell would know – he was ABF President at the time.

    There was a move in 1990 to encourage Pacific island players to get more involved in our Zone’s bridge and to try to get them to the NOT. There might have been some sort of plan to have a Zonal playoff in January in Canberra too, but that never eventuated. Some French Polynesian and other players did turn up to the SWPTC in those days. they might even have been subsidized – I don’t know. Hence the re-naming of part of the NOT.

    Paul Marston had a newish bridge club at the time, and donated the Grand Slam Trophy for the winners of the SPWTC from 1991 onwards. My recollection is that his team was leading the 1991 SWPTC with a match to go, but his partner (who did not particularly share his wish to win the first GST) made a series of ridiculous decisions in the last match, so the winners of the other section won the first GST when their VP total overtook that of PM’s team.

    PM was annoyed with his partner and decided to sit his partner out for the entirety of the NOT, and play with a different team member. On the Friday night there was a Victory Dinner style of party at which Stephen Burgess patched things up between PM and his partner. In the Grand Final a few days later, Burgess almost single-handedly beat Marston’s team, if you believed Paul Lavings’ AB artivlce on the event. I do.

    After the NOT Final, Marston’s partner visited his doctor to be told that his blood pressure had gone up dramatically. He was put on medication to reduce blood pressure.

    Well, that’s my recollection. Some parts, not including the last paragraph, might be inaccurate.

    Reply
  • 2. Andrew  |  May 26, 2010 at 4:52 pm

    Wouldn’t surprise me if the Gold Coast had given him free entry – it’s easier in a way for a local than a national body to do that kind of thing.

    I think Phil is right about the Herald cup, too – on the couple of occasions I spoke to Tim I had the feeling it was his favourite domestic event. And as Phil points out, Seres won it often enough to call it this own.

    I think I’m right in saying Tim is/was a life member of the NSWBA.

    Reply
  • 3. phil markey  |  May 26, 2010 at 12:39 pm

    the inaugral and only Tim Seres Individual was held about 10 years ago as an ANC event – in perth from memory – i think i have that right – anywho point is the ABF in their wisdom tried some sort of recognition of tim but it didnt last

    i completey agree with your sentiments – i think it would add considerable prestige to any event to name it after tim so it seems a no-brainer – i might choose the uninspriing south west pacific teams but probably most apt would be to rename the Herald cup which you get for winning the ANC open teams the Seres cup – i only know its the Herald cup cause i won it a couple of times and his name is all over the actual Herald cup anyway…

    Reply
    • 4. cathychua  |  May 26, 2010 at 5:51 pm

      Yes, I like both of these – why not have both?? I hate the way the names of tournaments are changed all the time…the idea that the NOT is no longer the NOT is a particularly dreadful one. I guess the idea is it sounds better – more international?? – by changing the name, but that’s just a crock. It had far more international players in it when it was called the NOT. Why is it that only a tiny number of teams – those who get to the final of Canberra – get to say they’ve played in the NOT? Huh??? I mean, really. HUHHHHH!!!?????????

      The very idea that an event – one event, with a qualifying and a final – has two names, let alone two names like this, is so bizarre one wonders what on earth went on in the heads of those who thought it was the right corporate strategy (as I imagine was the motivation).

      Does anybody know anything about this? Some of the things that have happened to Canberra over the years are just too sad and this is one of them.

      Reply

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