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Cecil John Seddon Purdy
Number of games in database: 79
Years covered: 1926 to 1979
Overall record: +38 -23 =17 (59.6%)*
   * Overall winning percentage = (wins+draws/2) / total games
      Based on games in the database; may be incomplete.
      1 exhibition game, odds game, etc. is excluded from this statistic.

With the White pieces:
 Ruy Lopez (6) 
    C97 C75 C99 C65
 English, 1 c4 e5 (5) 
    A28 A27 A25
 Nimzo Indian (5) 
    E49 E43 E26 E32
 Ruy Lopez, Closed (4) 
    C97 C99
With the Black pieces:
 Ruy Lopez (8) 
    C91 C86 C84 C61 C99
 Nimzo Indian (6) 
    E49 E47 E24 E34 E28
 Ruy Lopez, Closed (6) 
    C91 C86 C84 C99
 French Defense (5) 
    C14 C13 C09
 Queen's Pawn Game (4) 
    D04 A41 E10
 Sicilian (4) 
    B60 B96 B86 B34
Repertoire Explorer

NOTABLE GAMES: [what is this?]
   F L Vaughan vs Purdy, 1945 1/2-1/2
   Purdy vs F Crowl, 1934 1-0
   A Cuadrado vs Purdy, 1950 0-1
   F Crowl vs Purdy, 1936 0-1
   L Bigot vs Purdy, 1947 0-1
   Purdy vs M Napolitano, 1950 1-0
   C Nielsen vs Purdy, 1947 0-1
   A L Miller vs Purdy, 1946 0-1
   Purdy vs L Baijot, 1947 1-0
   O Sarapu vs Purdy, 1952 0-1

NOTABLE TOURNAMENTS: [what is this?]
   1st World Correspondence Chess Championship (1950)
   Sarapu - Purdy Match, Australasian Championship (1952)

GAME COLLECTIONS: [what is this?]
   1st World Correspondence Chess Championship by Benzol
   Sarapu - Purdy Match, Australasian Championship by Chessical

   Keene vs Purdy, 1979

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(born Mar-27-1906, died Nov-06-1979, 73 years old) Australia

[what is this?]
Cecil John Seddon Purdy was born in Port Said, Egypt.

His father was Dr. J. S. Purdy, England's representative on the International Quarantine Board for the Suez Canal. Hobart was his first Australian home and at the age of nine he went to Sydney where he has lived thereafter. He did not take up chess until he was nearly 15 years of age. During a rainy school holiday in the country he looked up "Chess" in the "Encyclopaedia Britannica." He copied out the rules carefully and after returning home started to pursue his new hobby.1

Other accounts stated he was 13 when he took up chess: "He was 13 when he began chess. He received useful instruction from from Mr. L. S. Crakanthorp father of Mr. Spencer Crakanthorp, ex-champion of New South Wales and New Zealand, and present champion of Australia. Only a year after Mr. Purdy learned the moves he was encouraged by the late A.E.N. Wallace, then Suite champion to enter for the State tourney of 1923." 2

Awarded the IM title in 1951 and the GMC title in 1953 he won the 1st World Correspondence Chess Championship (1950) - (1953). He won the New Zealand Championship twice, 1924-25 and 1935-36 and was Australian Champion on four occasions, 1934-35, 1936-37 (after a play-off), 1948-49 and 1951. He was also Australian Correspondence Champion in 1940 and 1948.

In 1952, Purdy played the New Zealand Champion Ortvin Sarapu in a 10-game match for the Sarapu - Purdy Match, Australasian Championship (1952). After nine games, the score was 5-4 in Sarapu's favour. Purdy won the 10th and final game to tie the match (+4, =2, -4).

He was the founder, editor, and publisher of a splendid chess magazine from 1929 to 1967 which went through three incarnations, 'Australasian Chess Review' (1929 - 1944), 'Check' (1944 - 1945) and 'Chess World' (1946 - 1967) and his writings are considered first class.

His father-in-law Spencer Crakanthorp and his son John Spencer Purdy have both been Australian Champions.

Sadly whilst playing at a tournament in Sydney in 1979 he suffered an aneurysm leading to his death. His last words to his son (who was also competing in the same tournament) were allegedly "I have a win, but it will take time".

1. "The West Australian" (Perth), Monday 13th July 1953, p.16

2. "Evening News" (Sydney, NSW), Friday 15th November 1929, p.2

Wikipedia article: Cecil Purdy

 page 1 of 4; games 1-25 of 79  PGN Download
Game  ResultMoves Year Event/LocaleOpening
1. C Boyce vs Purdy  1-038 1926 AUS-chC13 French
2. Purdy vs A Burr ½-½25 1926 NSW versus Victoria correspondence matchC65 Ruy Lopez, Berlin Defense
3. S Crakanthorp vs Purdy 1-026 1926 AUS-chC14 French, Classical
4. Purdy vs B Hill  1-059 1926 AUS-chD37 Queen's Gambit Declined
5. J Sayers vs Purdy  0-155 1926 AUS-chC13 French
6. Purdy vs J Kinman  1-036 1928 AUS-ch+D30 Queen's Gambit Declined
7. Purdy vs G Koshnitsky  0-147 1932 SydneyA13 English
8. G Koshnitsky vs Purdy  1-022 1932 SydneyD04 Queen's Pawn Game
9. F Crowl vs Purdy  0-168 1932 corrA00 Uncommon Opening
10. G Koshnitsky vs Purdy  1-039 1932 SydneyD04 Queen's Pawn Game
11. Purdy vs F Crowl 1-046 1934 CorrespondenceE32 Nimzo-Indian, Classical
12. Purdy vs G Koshnitsky  1-045 1934 Practice mD51 Queen's Gambit Declined
13. G Koshnitsky vs Purdy  1-036 1934 Practice mA25 English
14. M E Goldstein vs Purdy  0-126 1934 AUS-chD39 Queen's Gambit Declined, Ragozin, Vienna Variation
15. F Crowl vs Purdy 0-111 1936 corrC33 King's Gambit Accepted
16. L Steiner vs Purdy  1-043 1936 Simultaneous clock exhibitionB60 Sicilian, Richter-Rauzer
17. Purdy vs G McIntosh  0-122 1936 Correspondence GameD17 Queen's Gambit Declined Slav
18. Purdy vs G McIntosh 0-118 1937 crD10 Queen's Gambit Declined Slav
19. J W Cornforth vs Purdy 0-117 1937 Australian Correspondence championshipE34 Nimzo-Indian, Classical, Noa Variation
20. F Crowl vs Purdy  1-057 1939 Australian ChampionshipA06 Reti Opening
21. F L Vaughan vs Purdy ½-½13 1945 corr AUD82 Grunfeld, 4.Bf4
22. H Klass vs Purdy  1-047 1945 New South Wales-chC61 Ruy Lopez, Bird's Defense
23. G Koshnitsky vs Purdy  ½-½40 1945 AUS-corr chA17 English
24. Purdy vs Tartakower  ½-½32 1946 Australia versus France Radio MatchE43 Nimzo-Indian, Fischer Variation
25. Purdy vs G Koshnitsky  1-027 1946 Interclub MatchE49 Nimzo-Indian, 4.e3, Botvinnik System
 page 1 of 4; games 1-25 of 79  PGN Download
  REFINE SEARCH:   White wins (1-0) | Black wins (0-1) | Draws (1/2-1/2) | Purdy wins | Purdy loses  

Kibitzer's Corner
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Premium Chessgames Member
  whiteshark: <Oliveira> You're welcome.

<You aren't playing in a tournament to paint pictures, but to win points. <<<<<>>>>>>

-- Cecil Purdy

Premium Chessgames Member
  whiteshark: <One should not allow oneself to be cramped for the sake of avoiding a very small theoretical disadvantage.

<A small advantage in development will usually compensate for such slight troubles.

<Play a game of mobility and do not be scared by small theoretical weaknesses of whose actual significance you are not fully aware.


-- Cecil J. Purdy

Premium Chessgames Member
  wordfunph: Australian Master CJS of my favorite chess book authors, Happy Birthday CJS!
Premium Chessgames Member
  Benzol: <GrahamClayton> <Benzol, Those 46 games included 2 Australian correspondence chess championships and the inaugral ICCF World Championship. Has any other player, either OTB or CC, achieved so much success with so few games?>

Offhand I can't think of any. Maybe some player's run to the world title. I'm thinking of Capablanca and Fischer. And Botvinnik's win in the 1948 tournament. Do these qualify?

Feb-23-11  rapidcitychess: < In endings with bishops of opposite color, <<material means NOTHING, <position EVERYTHING. >>>>

-- Purdy

2+ pawns is often the material necessary for a win.

Premium Chessgames Member
  Benzol: Happy Birthday.


Premium Chessgames Member
  GrahamClayton: I was always intrigued why Purdy was born in Egypt, and I have found the reason why. His father, Dr JS Purdy, was the English representative on the International Quarantine Board in for the Suez Canal. The family moved to Hobart, and then to Sydney, where he remained for the rest of his life.
Aug-17-11  Antiochus: [Event "Unknown"]
[Site "Chicago"]
[Date "1964.??.??"]
[White "Pundy,J "]
[Black "Karklins,A "]
[Result "1-0"]
[ECO "C20"]

1. e4 e5 2. d3 Nf6 3. Nf3 Nc6 4. Be2 Be7 5. c3 d5 6. Nbd2 O-O 7. Qc2 a5 8. h3 b6 9. Nf1 Qd7 10. g4 Ba6 11. Ng3 Rfd8 12. Nf5 Bf8 13. Bg5 Qe6 14. h4 Rd7 15. h5 Nd8 16. Rg1 Nb7 17. N3h4 dxe4 18. dxe4 Bxe2 19. Qxe2 Nc5 20. Bxf6 Qxf6 21. g5 Qc6 22. g6 Nd3+ 23. Kf1 Nf4 24. gxf7+ Kh8 25. Ng6+ Qxg6 26. hxg6 Nxe2 27. Kxe2 Rad8 28. Rh1 Rd2+ 29. Kf3 h6 30. Rh2 Rxb2 31. Rg1 Rxa2 32. Rhg2 Rdd2 33. Kg4 a4 34. Kh4 a3 35. Nxh6 Be7+ 36. Kh5 Rd6 37. Rh2 Rf6 38. Nf5 1-0

Premium Chessgames Member
  whiteshark: Quote of the Day

<" If the student forces himself to examine all moves that smite, however absurd they may look at first glance, he is on the way to becoming a master of tactics. "<>>

-- Purdy

Sep-27-11  64rutor: Australian grandmaster Ian Rogers reports that Purdy's last words were "I have to seal a move", and that Purdy "wasn't even winning in the final position Cecil wouldn't have mistaken a drawn position for a winning position."
Oct-08-11  brankat: Once a chess player, always a chess player!
To the end.

R.I.P. Mr.Purdy.

Premium Chessgames Member
  Penguincw: Quote of the Day

< "n endings with bishops of opposite color, material means NOTHING, position EVERYTHING." >

Pretty true.

Premium Chessgames Member
  Penguincw: R.I.P. Purdy.
Sep-24-12  Chris1971: Perhaps the greatest teacher the game has ever known.......
Premium Chessgames Member
  Abdel Irada: <His dying message to his brother: "I have a win, but it will take time!>

Well, on the downside, he died, but on the upside, positionally speaking, he was Seddon Purdy at the time.

Premium Chessgames Member
  Shams: <Abdel> That's not half bad.
Premium Chessgames Member
  Abdel Irada: <That's not half bad.>

True. It's all bad. :-D

Premium Chessgames Member
  Jausch46: It is a pity that his best instructional chess books have no new editions. Amazon sells some used exemplars of the book which summarizes his legacy but not US residents cannot haveaccess to it. Can anybody help me to get second hand books from him? I would buy them.
Mar-27-13  JimNorCal: He gave much excellent practical advice. I don't have an exact quote, but he said something like: "If you can't find a move, then at least find a way to make your least valuable piece more active."
Mar-27-13  IndigoViolet: Does he give any advice on figuring out what one's least valuable/most inactive piece might be?
Mar-27-13  IndigoViolet: <Amazon sells some used exemplars of the book which summarizes his legacy but not US residents cannot haveaccess to it.>

You can order second hand books from anywhere, but I'm staggered by the prices for a paperback that's only 15 years old:

Mar-27-13  TheFocus: Actually, you can get a lot of Purdy's books at

Bob Long has been reprinting Purdy's books. You may have to get on his mailing list though.

Premium Chessgames Member
  Penguincw: ♔ Quote of the Day ♔

< "In endings with bishops of opposite color, material means NOTHING, position EVERYTHING." >


I like the use of CAPITALS.

Oct-24-14  ljfyffe: As the home nation of the first CC World Champion, C.J.S. Purdy, Australia will always have a special place in CC history. <lCCF Gold>
Premium Chessgames Member
  Chessical: <CHESS CHAMPION>

Mr Cecil J. S Purdy, who won the NSW Chess Championship at the School of Arts Club last night is only 22 years of age.

He is a son of Dr. J. S. Purdy. Metropolitan Medical Officer of Health, and was born at Port Said. After several years in New Zealand he came to Sydney, and was 13 when he began chess. He received useful instruction from from Mr. L.S.Crakanthorp father of Mr. Spencer Crakanthorp, ex-champion of New South Wales and New Zealand, and present champion of Australia.

Only a year after Mr. Purdy learned the moves he was encouraged by the late A.E.N. Wallace, then Suite champion to enter for the State tourney of 1923. The youth finished halfway up the list. Mr. Wallace and Mr. Purdy drew in a game which lasted seven hours.

He returned to New Zealand, to win at Nelson The Dominion Championship of 1924 at the age of 17. He competed twice for the championship of Australia Sydney 1926 and Perth 1928. Both events were won by Mr. Spencer Crakanthorp, and each time Mr. Purdy took third prize, with only one point behind the top.

His interstate telegraphic record is five wins, one draw, two losses. He has given exhibitions of simultaneous chess in Wellington, N.Z, Melbourne. Perth, and Sydney, taking on 12 opponents at once without ever losing a game.

He will compete in the next New Zealand Championship tourney,which starts Boxing Day at Wanganul.

Mr. Purdy has other activities besides chess. He is a tennis enthusiast, is editor of the 'Australian Chess Review' and is completing an arts course at Sydney University.

<Source: "Evening News" (Sydney, NSW) Friday 15th November 1929. Page 2.>

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