Friday, 30 December 2011

I still think this is weird

The San Sebastian tournament, celebrating the 100th anniversary of the celebrated win by Capablanca, is trying a different format from most chess tournaments. In fact it is taking an existing format, the knockout, and modifying it to repair a perceived weakness.
Having discovered that the player with the white pieces in the first game has a slight edge in progressing to the next round, the players are required to play both their games simultaneously. Two players, two boards, one with white, one with black. This way the advantage of starting with the white pieces goes away.
Of course the drawback is that you cannot concentrate on just one game, and I suspect trying to manage two games at once may cause a new set of problems.
But if you want to find out more about the tournament, and the format, Chessvibes has a comprehensive report of the first few days.

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