Thank you to everybody who participated in the 2013 Begonia Open despite the sweltering conditions of Victoria's hottest start to March on record. 127 players took part at this year's event, just shy of last year's record 131 entries. 22 players contested the Open division for players rated over 2000 ACF, and 35 players contested each of the three other rating divisions. Full details of the tournament are available on http://www.chesschat.org/ and http://www.auschess.tornelo.com/.
As usual, the pairings for the first two rounds were accelerated, leading to some tough and exciting encounters amongst the top players right from the start of the tournament. Angelo Tsagarakis, Tony Davis, Leon Kempen, and Svetozar Stojic, and Vineetha Wijesuriya all scored upset victories in the early rounds against much higher rated opponents. Four players were left remaining on a perfect score going into round 5: Stephen Solomon, Brodie McClymont, James Morris and Chris Wallis. Morris beat Solomon, and McClymont and Wallis both won. In round 6 Wallis beat McClymont, for a final round showdown with Morris who had been held to a draw by Luke Li.
James Morris won his encounter with Chris Wallis for a well-deserved tournament victory with 6.5 points. The youthful quartet, Chris Wallis, Brodie McClymont, Karl Zalesco and Yi Liu shared second place with 6 points each. Leon Kempen, Dimitri Partsi and Svetozar Stojic won the Group A division. Ballarat player Rodney Jacobs, David Cannon and Marko Grabovac (who jointly won last year’s group C) shared the spoils in Group B. Vishal Bhat and Bobby Yu took out group C.
Thanks to Chess World / Chess Kids for sponsoring the tournament and providing the Tornelo tournament software. Thank you to Kevin Perrin, Patrick Cook, and the Ballarat Chess Club organisers for hosting the event and working very hard to make the tournament run so smoothly. Thanks also to Chess Victoria for providing sets and clocks used at the tournament.