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PostPosted: Fri Jan 20, 2012 11:54 am 
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Hello all,
Greetings from Singapore.
This is my first post and I hope I will be excused for making it a request for information.
I am part of a team working on a book on the history of Singapore Chess.
We are aware that several good players from Malaya (present day Malaysian and Singapore) came up to London in the late 40s and 50s.
In particular, we are looking for information on (and games played by) (Dr) Goh Keng Swee, who was at LSE from 1949-51, and again from 1954-56.
We have some anecdotal evidence that he played in London but have no tournament reports or game scores. (He also played friendly matches at Malaya Hall, near Bryanston Square).
Dr Goh later became a prominent politician in Singapore.

Any information on this subject in general or Goh in particular would really be appreciated.
thank you. :)
Shashi


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PostPosted: Sun Feb 12, 2012 1:22 pm 
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I can't tell you anything about Singaporean chess, but I can tell you that I've only played the Marshall Gambit once, and I lost to Shashi Jayakumar!

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"Yes, but I prefer a game with a better chance of cheating."


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PostPosted: Mon Feb 13, 2012 1:48 am 
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I can only think that the information being sought may be buried in old magazines or in the minds of veteran players who may not frequent this forum.
One such player is Michael Franklin - hope he will not mind me mentioning his name - I have heard him mentioning players such as Stefan Fazekas (IM 1953 & Br. champ. 1957).
He may, or may not, remember Dr. Goh and other Singaporeans from those days.

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To find a for(u)m that accommodates the mess, that is the task of the artist now. (Samuel Beckett)


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PostPosted: Mon Feb 13, 2012 1:04 pm 
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Hi John, many thanks for the tip. I actually was advised to write to Mr Franklin by another individual who also thinks he might be able to help. I have his address and will do so.

Hi Ed - good to hear from you. I remember that match (County C'ship semifinal 1996, no?) quite well, together with the decidedly strange game 2 in our match. Pl pass my rgds to Matt and Jochen if you see them.best.
Shashi


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PostPosted: Mon Feb 13, 2012 2:25 pm 
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Shashi Jayakumar does not indicate the playing strength of Dr. Goh Keng Swee. Have the magazines for the period that he attended the LSE. His name is not listed on the BCF Grading Lists for the period. Remember the Malaya Hall in Bryanston Square; he may have limited his chess activity to friendly games at this student meeting place. Survivors from this period that come to mind; M.J. Franklin, L.W. Barden, M. Macdonald-Ross, and J. Penrose.


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PostPosted: Tue Feb 14, 2012 6:10 am 
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Hi Gordon,
many thanks for following up on the grading lists, appreciated.
How good was Dr Goh really? We may attempt to address this in the book but may never know the real answer. In 1948, Goh tied first for the Championship of the Singapore Chess Club, with 10.5/12. The person he tied with, Dr (later Prof) Lim Kok Ann, was possibly playing at what would be a present rating of 2200-2300. Unfortunately I have no cross table nor game scores for this or any other tournament that Goh played in.
On his London sojurn : an academic who wrote Dr Goh's biography told me that he did come across a reference to Goh playing competitively, and apparently successfully, in London. But he cannot recall whether the source for this was a print reference, or a recollection from one of Goh's contemporaries.
Many thanks.
Shashi


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PostPosted: Sat Feb 25, 2012 8:07 am 
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Joined: Fri Jan 20, 2012 10:46 am
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Could I follow up with an appeal for information on English/British chessplayers who did their National Service in Malaya from the late 40s and through to 1960? Many did extremely well in competition in Malaya. Examples are

- G.H Brownbill, winner of the Malayan Championship in 1952
- Pat Aherne, winder of the Singapore Chess Championship in 1950. There is a Pat Aherne who turns up in the records of the West London Chess Club and who indeed was its champion in 1963-4 and 1994-5.
- Michael Davis, winner of the Malayan Championship in 1956. A bio on the website of the Hastings Chess Club indicates that he later migrated to Australia and was an academic there.

Another player who did well in Malaya while doing his National Service was the late Norman Littlewood.

Many thanks.
Shashi


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