Wednesday, September 19, 2012

2012 Changes to the FIDE Laws of Chess

As a result of my tardiness, I never made it to the end of my discussion about the proposed changes to the FIDE Laws of Chess before the changes were actually made. It turns out that some suggestions from the meeting of RTRC Counselors in April 2012 were accepted, some were rejected, and some third party proposals were debated at the 2012 FIDE Congress.
RTRC Chairman Geurt Gijssen has made a summary of the changes and posted them in his Chess Cafe Column. The link is on the right hand side of the screen.

Thursday, September 6, 2012

No draw offers before 30 moves

Two interesting incidents from the current Olympiad concerning the no draw offers before move 30 rule. In one match a player came down with a health problem (280/120 was his blood pressure reading!) and as a result, the medical staff said he was unable to continue the game, as he could seriously damage his health. The opponent was happy to agree to a draw, but the problem was that it was only move 28. However the arbiter sensibly suggested that the players concerned play 2 quick moves, and then a draw could be offered. This was done (causing no extra stress for the player concerned) and then the point was shared. The other incident was quite funny for the spectators, but maybe not the players involved. At some point in a lower board match, a player offered a draw, although it was only about move 25. The opponent pointed out they had to reach move 30 before a draw could be offered, and the game continued. Now it is not clear if the first player believed that he had been promised a draw by move 30, but this is certainly how he played. He played some garbage moves to get to move 30, but in doing so left himself with a lost position. But having reached move 30 he was then very angry when the now allowable draw offer was refused. He began verbally abusing his opponent, who was in the middle of executing a mating attack. When the axe finally fell he picked up his opponents queen and slammed it down on the board, all the time calling is opponent names. Even his other team members could not keep a straight face, and the offending players captain made a great show of congratulating the opponent, and apologising for his team members appalling behaviour. For the rest of us, it has been the best 'dummy spit' of the tournament so far!