Saturday, September 5, 2009

Chess is Chess team members

Although we did not win any prizes in the Merdeka Team, it felt good to play together with friends some of whom I have known for over thirty years. Let me introduce my good friends and team members.

Chin Seng is a former national champion. After winning the championship he realized he could never top that. Thereafter he hatched Operation Beyond Sky ("li tian"), whereby he will conquer the (chess) world by proxy. This culminated in the birth of his son, Li Tian.

As a sixteen year old boy, I wandered into the Penang Chess Association one day. Chuah Heng Meng was one of the first chess player I met then. We became friends immediately. He can be called Mr. Penang because you can always see him every Friday night and Sunday afternoon at the old Hooi Lye Association at Kimberley Street where the Penang Chess Association had it's meetings. In the late seventies and into the eighties, we practically kept the playing sessions going between the two of us. Some days it would only be him and me, with a chess board and clock, churning out tens of blitz games.

One Sunday a boy of about ten wearing shorts and slippers came to the Hooi Lye premises accompanied by his father. Even at this age, Eric Cheah was quite independent and quickly became a permanent fixture at the club. Once he competed in the Asian Juniors which was held in Kuala Lumpur. The tournament was held in an empty shop-lot in a new shopping centre (if memory serves, this would be the Wilayah Kompleks where DATCC chess league was played recently). One day Eric was late for the round and running at full speed towards his table forgot about the glass front of the shop-lot. He crashed right through. Miraculously he only sustained only minor cuts. To this day he still have the scars from this accident.

Chess is Chess results

Board 1 Jimmy Liew 6.5 / 9
Board 2 Yeoh Chin Seng 5.5 / 9
Board 3 Chuah Heng Meng 4.5 / 9
Board 4 Eric Cheah 4 / 9


Chess 4 Life said...

Operation Beyond Sky eh? Nice name for a project! Haha!

Anyway, Chin Seng refreshed my memory by telling me that this was the same line-up 20 years (?) ago that won the Merdeka Team Ch'ships. It was great seeing Eric - it felt like the old days. It felt good. Thanks for the memories my friend! Chess players are indeed One Family!!

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