Wednesday, 30 June 2010
Fischer Random Fun
While Fischer Random (or Chess 960) hasn't really taken off in Australia, I still get called upon to DOP the odd tournament. The ACT Junior Chess League ran their first Fischer Random title event last week, and although it was a small field (31 players), the players enjoyed themselves enough to want it to be held next year.
Directing a Fischer Random event is much like directing any other chess event, except you get to answer a lot more questions about castling. For example in the starting position shown, White can castle queenside after moving the bishop on b1 and the knight on d1. Having done so, 'castling' consists of placing the king on c1 and the rook on d1, just as you would do in a normal game of chess. It was this definition of castling that Bobby Fischer added to Shuffle Chess that made it 'his'.
However I was asked a pretty clever question by one of the participants, based on the example starting position. Assume that White does castle queenside in the manner previously described. If White then moves the bishop on g1, the queen on f1, the knight on e1, and the 'castled rook' on d1 off the back rank, can White now castle kingside, as the king and rook have not yet moved?
My answer, was that although the white king hadn't 'moved', by castling queenside, it has been moved, as otherwise Rd1 was illegal. This seem to satisfy the player concerned, but I suspect he was simply trying to come up with the smartest question of the day.