After outclassing a field which included two Grandmasters and five International Masters to take his fourth Doeberl Cup and the $2,200 first prize, Johansen commented that he thought the field "a little weaker than usual".
Perception is everything; with Johansen playing so convincingly, most title aspirants proobably thought that in 2001 the Cup was further out of reach than ever.
Johansen started the tournament with five straight wins and was then able to coast to victory with two comfortable draws. The Melbourne GM's wins included a remarkable game in round three against 14-year-old IM Zhao Zong Yuan where Johansen walked into 25 moves of opening preparation by Zhao and still manged to emerge with an advatageous endgame which the GM won in 80 moves.
Johansen praised the general tournament conditions, especially the move back to the Italo-Australian Club in Forrest which coped easily with the 168 players.
As usual, the Doeberl Cup was a showcase for the country's best juniors and this year it was Sydney teenager Justin Tan who took the opportunity to impress, on the very weekend when selections were being made for the 2001 World Age Championships.
Tan started the tournament with a draw against the second seed, Yugoslav GM Stefan Djuric, and went on to beat IM David Smerdon later in the event. The Easter period sees an abundance of tournaments worldwide - from Mar del Plata to Dubai - and this week's game comes from a 400+ player open in Germany which concluded on Monday.
2001 Doeberl Cup
Leading final scores:
Open 1.Johansen(V) 6/7; 2.Lane(Eng) 5.5; 3eq.Djuric(Yug), Rujevic(V), Tindall(N) 5.
Major 1eq. Rout(ACT), Chow(V), Harp(N), M.Lip(N), Ilic(N) 5.5/7.
Minor 1.Hellman(ACT) 6/7.
Rogers - E.Mensch