Wednesday, 7 October 2020

Some slightly odd goings on

 I tend to make a big thing about directing the ACT Junior Chess Championship, as it was both the first important tournament I played in (in 1982) and the first tournament I was the arbiter for (in 1984).So I'm always happy when asked to the the Arbiter, as I was this year.

The first day saw 35 players turn up, which is not a bad number (the fields were a lot smaller in my day). With only 3 rounds so far the top players are only just starting to meet, so a likely champion is not clear at this stage. But there was still some things worth noting, including some odd opening theory.

One game started with 1.c4 e5 2.c5?! which was met by the obvious 2 ... Bxc5, while a new line in the Sicilian started with 1.e4 c5 2.Nf3 Q "oh it's touch move" a5.

However the winner of the strangest idea was in fact a chess variant which I have never seen before (or quite understood the rules once I did). It looked like the "Pawn Game" (where you only have pawns and try and promote first) combined with Transfer (so 4 players in total). Where it lost me was not understanding why you couldn't just drop onto the 7th rank and win very quickly.  

As there are another 3 rounds tomorrow, I should make the effort to find the answer to this question.

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