Dundee International Centenary Tournament 1967

From: Scottish Chess, the Bulletin of the Scottish Chess Association, Nr. 23, May-August 1967.

During the last two weeks of July, a Centenary Tournament and the Scottish Congress were held in Dundee. The tournament celebrated a similar event in 1867 when the top tournament had been won by Neumann ahead of Steinitz. This year's tournament was organised by a committee headed by the Lord provost of Dundee and including members of the City Council with W.A. Fairhurst, President of the Scottish Chess Association and originator of the concept of holding an International Tournament, handling the technical aspects of the organising.

Mr Fairhurst also gave two official dinners, the first [July 11th] being to welcome the players with the Lord Provost and Council Members of Dundee attending, and the second [July 22nd] being to welcome the players for the Scottish Congress to Dundee with the Lord Provost, local M.P Mr [Peter] Doig and the Under-Secretary of State for Scotland Lord Hughes attending.

The International Tournament was controlled by Harry Golombek and the Dundee organisers were Mrs N.C. Elder, W.P. McColl, A.D.D. McKay with H.Deas controlling the Scottish Congress events.

Dundee 1967

1

2

3

4

5

6

7

8

9

Pts

1

Gligoric , S.

1

½

½

½

1

1

1

1

2

Larsen, B.

0

1

½

0

1

1

1

1

3

Olafsson, F.

½

0

1

½

½

1

1

1

4

O'Kelly, A.

½

½

0

½

1

1

1

½

5

5

Penrose, Dr J.

½

1

½

½

½

½

1

½

5

6

Kottnauer, C.

0

0

½

0

½

½

1

½

3

7

Davie, A.M.

0

0

0

0

½

½

0

1

2

8 Wade, R.G.
0
0
0
0
0
0
1
1
2
9 Pritchett, C.W.
0
0
0
½
½
½
0
0

 

The International Tournament was won quite comfortably by S. Gligoric, his only challenger, F. Olafsson, failing in the last round against B. Larsen. Larsen did not seem to be quite on form and his characteristic experiments mostly failed. Apart from the winner, Dr J. Penrose was the only player to avoid defeat, reflecting the solidity of his play. Had he won more games against the tail-enders, he could have challenged for first place - a very fine performance despite having a cold midway through the tournament. Both the Scots, Davie and Pritchett, were inadequately prepared in the opening and frequently went into the middle game in the inferior position. Pritchett was further troubled by having five blacks and, in the earlier rounds, by a tendency to drift unnecessarily into time trouble.

A. Pomar of Spain withdrew ill during round three and his score was cancelled.

We are grateful to W.A. Fairhurst, C.W. Pritchett, the Tournament Book published in the Chess Player series, and S. Gligoric for help in the writing of this report.

The following three images of the programme were kindly supplied by Jim Doyle of the Shettleston CC (Glasgow), who participated in the SCA Congress.

From:
Centenary Tournament Dundee 1967, by R.G. Wade (The Chess Player, Nottingham, 1967)

The possibility of holding an International Tournament to celebrate the centenary of the 1867 tournament was discussed between W.A. Fairhurst and Dundee's Lord Provost (i.e. Lord Mayor) McManus in December 1966, and in January 1967 a committee headed by the Lord Provost and including members of the City Council was formed to promote the project.

Mr Fairhurst was asked to invite a number of International Grandmasters to participate in a tournament with from ten to twelve players including Scottish and English masters.

In May, after the council elections, a new committee was formed under Lord Provost Alex MacKenzie with Baillies J.M. Gillies and Kames Walker, and councillors George Soutar, Robert Doyle, J.L. Stewart, A.J. Thomson and Harry Dickson as the members.

Mr Fairhurst reported progress to the new committee, and it was agreed that the event should take place from July 11th to 26th in the Marryat Hall of the Caird Hall adjacent to the City Chambers.

Unfortunately, due to other events in their own countries, Keres and Botvinnik of the U.S.S.R., and Szabo of Hungary, who were invited, were not able to accept despite their expressed wish to do so. Despite this setback a very strong entry was obtained, thanks to R.G. Wade who provided valuable contacts during the negotiations, and with Grandmasters Gligoric, Larsen, Olafsson, O'Kelly and Pomar able to compete the success of the tournament was ensured.

Additional notes:
Prior to the second dinner on Saturday July 22nd, coinciding with the beginning of the Scottish Chess Association's annual congress, there had been an open-air game of chess on a pleasant afternoon at the big granite board that Fairhurst had incorporated in the approaches to the Tay Road Bridge at the Dundee end. (Mr Fairhurst, a renowned civil and structural engineer, was involved in the building of this bridge, which opened in 1966.) The game was between Teddy Taylor, Conservative M.P for Cathcart [Glasgow] and Peter Doig, Labour M.P for Dundee West, the latter winning.

Prizes:
1st £200 2nd £140 3rd £100 4th £70 5th £50. In addition, non-prize winners received £5 for each won game.

Sources:
Scottish Chess Bulletin Nr. 23, May-August 1967.
Chess Nr. 523-4, March 1967, page 149 and Nr. 535-6, August 1967, page 331 and others.
Centenary Tournament Dundee 1967, by R.G. Wade (The Chess Player, Nottingham, 1967)
Jim Doyle, Shettleston CC (Glasgow)

Alan McGowan