Friday, 13 May 2016

The ever shrinking Olympiad

When I first played the chess Olympiad (in 2000), it was a 14 round event, with teams of 6 players. Over the years the Olympiad has gotten shorter (and smaller). The rounds dropped from 14, to 13 then to 11. The size of the teams dropped from 6 to 5 (in the Open), although the number of boards playing remained at 4. As compensation the size of the Women's teams went from 4 to 5, although not every country sends a women's team (although on occasion some countries only send a women's team).
For this year what's getting chopped is the number of rest days, from 2 to 1. Previously the format had been 5 rounds, rest, 5 rounds, rest, final round. I assume that instead it will be 6 rounds, rest, 5 rounds. Obviously this is to reduce the costs of the organisers, who are on the hook for players accommodation. And as a player I would not be that fussed, as my primary focus if I am in a team is playing chess (although if I was a professional I might be more concerned). But as with previous changes of this nature, it is part of a trend to reduce the cost of holding chess Olympiads as much as possible. Maybe the previous suggestion from within FIDE of a two tier, 2 round a day, 1 week Olympiad isn't that far off.


Name/URL said...

Given that there are reserve players (albeit one less than back in the day), why are there rest days at all? Just rotate the guy who is rested.

Anonymous said...

Every time FIDE signs up a new Federation and invites them to participate in the Olympiad, it increases the cost of organising it. Those bidding for the Olympiad usually claim bottomless pockets, it's usually found when they come to pay that their funds are limited.