Monday 30 March 2009

Another interesting scoring system

If you use Google News to look for up to date chess stories, then you will find plenty of coverage of the "Battle of GM's" chess tournament currently running in the Philippines. While most of the coverage focuses on Wesley So's march to victory, it also reveals the use of an interesting scoring system. Instead of the normal 1.0,0.5,0 system, the tournament is awarding 2 points for a win, 1 for a draw and 0 for a loss. No surprises so far, except in the case of draw by stalemate. If this happens the stalemated player gets 0.5 points but the player forcing the stalemate (ie the player who played the last move) gets 1.5 points.
While this may seem odd, it opens up a some new endgame stratagems. While KNN v K is normally not worth playing out, under this system the stronger player can at least score 1.5 points by forcing a stalemate. And K+PvK endings can now be played to the end. Indeed at Dubbo if this system was being used Fritz Van Der Waal may have taken 3rd place outright as he could have stalemated Tony Weller in their tense final round draw.
The other interesting feature of this tournament is their treatment of the 'No agreed draws in under 30 moves' rule. So and Rogelio Antonio breached this rule by agreeing to a draw in 16 moves in their Round 6 game. The NCFP (National Chess Federation of the Philippines) simply ordered the players to play the game again, which they will do tomorrow.


Garvin said...

It will be interesting to see what happens if the players draw in under 30 moves again, either by repetition (genuine or not) or by agreement.

The Closet Grandmaster said...

The game was replayed yesterday and it was another draw, this time in 31 moves.