Sunday, July 4, 2010

The start of a plan.

We want our saplings to grow into mighty Oaks. Some into GM's, and the others to stand tall in a globalised world. To be men/women of worth, of substance, making valuable contributions. Not parasites, weak people that run around with a begging bowl that only know how to prey on the weak.

Is that what you want for your child? Is that the end in sight?

If it is, there is one principle we need to embrace. They do as we do, they do not do as we say.

So, what do we have now? In the chess world. We hear people have tried for many many years to change the system. None have succeeded. Money have been spent, persuasion tried, opportunities offered and it's still the same. So many just sit down now and say we are helpless and some have joined that system.

A circle of negativity. How do we change that? If you go back to my personal story, read here, I hope I've shown that one positive result can take us far.

It brings back hope and positive energy. Just one.

So forget about changing MCF. If you try, they will suck your energy, you will use 1000 pounds of energy to produce one ounce of work. Over time you will be exhausted and nothing will have changed.

Think, do we really need them? What is the fear? That they will fix the matches? That they will not submit your results. That they will victimise your child? That they will victimise you?

They are using your fears against you. And if they succeed, you would have lost all you wanted to get out of chess. I remember telling Mark, if you allow them to intimidate you, you will never be a GM or for that matter a person of substance.

So look again, can MCF really do what you think they can do? The threats lie beneath the surface. They smile and try to look reasonable on the surface. Why? It's because nowadays with the blogs, they cannot do like they did before. News spread like wild fire today. So they have adapted. Your fears may not be grounded in reality today.

So I say, let them be. We focus on getting results. Achievable results. We stop barking up the wrong tree.

And we keep in our memory one major point. We need a safe nursery to incubate our saplings. Then they can grow into tall oaks. Then they can fend for themselves one day. When we are no longer around or even when we are around but older.

Remember that, dont compromise. Do it for the children. They cant stand on their own yet. For now we need to stand for them. Will you do it?

First GM is formulating a plan that we hope will have the elements that will achieve real results. The sight is a little further; beyond our shores. Why? Because the first GM can only come when we can compete Internationally. More work needs to be done still but it is coming.


  1. "So forget about changing MCF. If you try, they will suck your energy, you will use 1000 pounds of energy to produce one ounce of work. Over time you will be exhausted and nothing will have changed."

    I like this statement fr u, it showed u r learning well. Would like to find out whether u derive this conclusion Before or After ur ASEAN experience?

  2. I had my suspicions before Subic Bay but confirmed after. As I have written before, one cant conclude from just rumours. It's better to confirm things for yourself. And the best way is to engage them. Then all the colours come out. It's a small price to pay to know their characters.

  3. Btw, thank you for saying I am learning well. But have you learned anything too?

  4. I'm not a good writer like u but as I read your post, it makes me realise that u penned things in a sequential way which r also my thinking thought flash back from the past in random order. So, I can say indeed I learnt.

    Each of us have our own unique experience in chess, we choose from agree to diasagree on statements based our exp. Just like John's long-term associate with CAS CTEP made him develops on a method / believing that u disagree because u didn't have the CAS CTEP experience.

    As u gain more exp in today's child training, u will tend to be more agreeable on methods / believing of others who have went through the same processes many times in the past.

  5. I am open to understanding more about CAS CTEP.

    I have experience in Counselling and Performance Coaching at a high level. Previous coachees include VP at Bank Bumiputra Finance. I also have experience in running a multi national company and now own an Internet company that employs people globally. And my partner also has vast global experience. We may not know that much about chess, but we both have have kids who are National level players and I have guided my son through all these years. I think we may have something to offer too. Adding also my short experience in PICA and first hand experience in engaging MCF from the inside via Asean is improving our understanding rapidly.

  6. No doubt ur exp. with professional adults are vast. Ur exp with kids r limited to Mark and few others. Mark is not a good exp. gauge because he comes from a "know how" family.

    As for CAS CTEP, u can get more info from John since he was the trainer. Btw, I heard this is the only programme done so far in Malaysia that can bring students up few levels to match the best seniors of that time.

  7. Thank you. I will try to get as much info as possible. I am planning to make a trip to Singapore to learn as much as I can. It cant be easy to get a GM or we would have one already. So there is still much to be learned. So far we have learned much on what not to do. We need more imputs on what to do.

  8. I am coming up to KL for the Merdeka and Rapid events in end August. Should be easy to meet then. I'm always welcome to share whatever is useful.

    As to learning in Singapore, I gather that you are seeing IntChess or the Asean Chess Academy. Do request to observe how they teach the kids..hopefully you will not get the same observations as what they've done in KL?

  9. I will be asking to see how their classes are conducted. I wont be at Merdeka. Maybe we can meet when I am i Singapore. Will drop you a note before I come.

  10. It will be good to ask to see the lesson conducted in person - do not take any one's word for anything.

    Otherwise this trip is not really worth the trouble, because I fear it will not be much of the same.

    I was talking one of their trainers some time ago asking about how lessons were structured. The trainer (who was leaving Singapore anyway) told me that the trainer in session with beginners jumped into pawn endganes (K + P vs K) without teaching how to checkmate with K + Q vs Q. He felt that the syllabus was wrongly sequenced, did offer advice to help streamline it but was flatly refused. He left Singapore disappointed.

    There will be many such incidents but I shall not share it online.

  11. Raymond,

    I have read your articles on imagined fears and parents 2. Let me address the parents first.

    Parents today have more time to spend with their kids and are of course duty bound to see the best for them in their field of interest. Their sacrifices made in time and support are immeasurable. I commend all supportive parents of chess players for this, as I certainly did not have any.

    My parents feared that I would give up my studies for chess as back in the 80's it is not feasible to even consider chess as a decent livelihood. Today, ironically, I am making a living out of my beloved hobby, where many of my peers are wondering where their careers would go when retrenchment is on the horizon.

    The chess scenery has changed in Singapore/Malaysia for the better in the last 10 years. Both countries are in better shape,both financially and in parental perception, to support chess excellence. Yet we trail behind poorer countries like Vietnam and Indonesia. Strangely, the players do not necessarily come from well-to-do families in these countries. The point? Hungry players count for more than affluent parents of not-so-hungry players.

    Chess politics exist in every country, it differs only in matter of degree. The scene is not much different here in Singapore. We had a law suit against the SCF which was launched by a disgruntled parent over selection, while I was voted out of the SCF Council as someone who offered my services to training Malaysian players. So your grouses are nothing new to me.

    I then to agree with Anonswriter on some points, particularly on the need to have the talents first. Maybe he agrees with me first :-). The other point is to implement the program to groom the talent and see them shine above all current players. When that happens, everyone will make way. Bobby Fischer is one example. No chess politics is going to stop him from reaching the top. Until that happens, we soldier on, searching,training and competiting until the right one comes along.

    There are other tournaments that one can prepare players to go to, now that information is available on the Net. You can arrange to have players play for selected tournaments rather than the traditional ones like the Asean or Asian tournaments. The children can get their FIDE ratings by playing regular tournaments instead. Earn it the right way. . Or organise your own like what the First Saturday Tournament is doing in Hungary.Royal selangor CAS tournament is a good example. These will have to be classical time-control tournaments of course.

    If you are successful in churning out players who have their FIDE ratings increased, then it is a good step. I am sure with the results, sponsorship should be forthcoming.

    Of course, this plan requires a good training program and absolute dedication from the children. Hence I repeat that weeding out at this point is necessary to select only those who are keen and passionate. Yes, the attrition will kick in but if the screening process is thorough then the dropouts will be minimal.

    CS Solutions is offering this program. What they will need are the right students. I am confident that they will work out, after some fine-tuning of the syllabus and approach.

    Hopefully your imagined fears of their competence will disappear as I know Mr Najib to be a serious,yet no-nonsense organiser who is truly a good man and will be able to do the job.