Tuesday, 10 March 2009

Some kind of win

Back in November 2008, I had a lengthy post on the Rules and Tournament Regulation Committee meeting during the Dresden Olympiad. One of the hot topics was the question of a default time for chess events (ie how long does a player have to appear before losing the game by default). As a participant at the meeting I had proposed a default 'default' time of 30 minutes, with the caveat that this could be changed by the tournament organisers. At the meeting this was changed to 0 minutes, and by the time the proposal had reached the FIDE General Assembly, there were moves to remove the organisers discretion in setting the time at all. No decision was reached at the GA, so it was punted to the FIDE Presidential Board for a decision.
The Presidential Board has just wrapped up its meeting in Istanbul, and the issue has been resolved, in a kind of satisfactory way. The 0 minute default time remains, but so does the ability of an organiser to set a different time.
For tournament I am involved with organising, I will recommend 30 minutes, but the important thing is to make sure that this condition is clearly printed on the entry forms etc Because the big fear is that organisers will forget to list their own default time, and there will be a rush of players claiming wins within seconds of the start of each round. While I hope that common sense would prevail if such a situation occurred, there will always be someone who will argue that 'the rules are the rules', and under the new rules (post 1 July 2009), they will be in the right.


TrueFiendish said...

How about going the next step and requiring all players to arrive 30 minutes before each flight, I mean game, to have their seats allocated and luggage checked and subsequently lost. Any player arriving late would run the risk of losing their seat to a "standby" player.

Then, of course, when the flight, I mean the start of the game, is delayed, everyone could sit around bored, wondering why in hell they had to arrive so early anyway.

Jim said...

I agree with your first paragraph TrueFiendish. It also means that those arriving early could actually be useful in assisting with any last minute arrangements.

It irks me no end when I arrive to set up a venue, dragging out tables, sets, boards and clocks, sweating blood and observing parents arriving just standing around discussing the best coffee house they went to last Friday while the hardy few roll up their sleeves and help.

I have a view that organisers should, where possible, arrive at the playing venue no later that 1 hour before start time to get things moving. I'd also like to see registrations close 15 minutes before the scheduled start.

As for the default time, I assume that if an entry form does not state the default time then 0 would apply. Best, as Shaun implies, that every entry form states the default time whether it be 0, 5 ,10 or whatever.

Possibly the ACF will produce a guideline or By-Law on this as the matter could be contentious and there are enough arguments in the chess world without encouraging even more.