Thursday, 15 March 2007

This porridge is too hot ....

For its opening night, the Australian National University Chess Club had a good start. We had a number of new players from the undergraduate body of the University, the returning group from last year, consisting of what might be termed "solid club players", and a couple of strong players trying it out for the first time.
For its second night, the new players failed to return, and the strongest newcomer didn't come back either. Having organised a few clubs (successfully and unsuccessfully), this phenomena is not uncommon. Without trying to read the minds of the absent players, it appears that the weaker players think the club is too strong for them, while the strong players think the club is too weak.
Is there a solution to the problem? Yes, although it isn't an easy one. I feel the players in the groups at either end of the spectrum probably need to themselves bring players to the club of a similar strength. Strong players should encourage other strong players to play, while newcomers may need to encourage their social chess playing friends to give it a go.

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