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Scottish Chess Championships 2013
andyburnett Wrote:I would be perfectly happy for a much stronger player to think of me as a 'bunny' but calling me one wouldn't be appreciated :\

Once upon a time, maybe a hedgehog, but never a bunny Andy Tongue
Geoff Chandler Wrote:This current batch have fallen for the hype and cannot switch off their boxes.
This is why talented players who learned their skill without computers are winning Scottish Championships.

There are no Scottish IM's or GM's under 30 years old. Most are on the wrong side of 40!
Its' proof that computers are doing damage and sucking the creativity out of our players.

I just input this into my computer Geoff and it said "No". Sorry. Big Grin
First, can I say how much I enjoyed this year's championship in Helensburgh, despite my results worsening in the second half of the week. A big thank you to all involved, including the canteen staff for supplying us with nice hot soup to keep the chill out.

Now, on to the matter of the pairings, particularly round 3, when the accelerated pairings "unwound".
After round 2, there were 11 players on 1.5, 6 from the top half of the draw, 5 from the lower half. So surely it should have been the middle-rated player Lawrence Trent, not David Oswald, who got the down-float to face some-one from the group on 1.0 ?

Overall, there were 55 players in the draw, with a grading spread of over 900 points between top and bottom, so some mismatches are inevitable.
There were only 3 other players graded between 2190 and 2360, for example, which completely explains why Alan Tate didn't play many opponents around his own strength.
At any stage, for any given group of players with the same score, there is going to be a big grading spread.

So what to do? Well, you could have a grading floor for the championship of, say, 2100, so norm chances aren't ruined by playing a lower-graded player. And run 7-day "Major Open" and u-1600(?) sections alongside. [This is a suggestion - not an AGM motion]

The downside would be even fewer Scottish players for the eventual Scottish Champion to compete against, and fewer "rabbits" contributing their carrots to the prize fund.

Kind Regards,

PS. Share the title if there's a tie.
I get my kicks above the waistline, sunshine
Hi Alan,

The draws were checked using Swiss Master which is FIDE approved. Doing it roughly in my head, for Lawrence to Float down, David would have had to stay black as he was +1 black. This would have given the choice of Gawain switching colours or you facing Gawain with a very unbalanced draw. Neither at that stage is desirable, I really need the pairing cards in front of me to double check everything but glancing at it that would have been why we came up with that draw
"How sad to see, what used to be, a model of decorum and tranquility become like any other sport, a battleground for rival ideologies to slug it out with glee"
Thanks for that explanation, Andy. With such a grading gap between Lawrence and David, and the GM/IM tendency to agree draws instead of fighting to a finish ;P , I guess you had little room for manoeuvre.
I get my kicks above the waistline, sunshine
Hi Mathew.

"But there are a significant number of twenty somethings who are committed enough to want
to spend a week in Andorra playing chess."

And that seems to be the problem. There are dozens are talented under 25's but they all seem
to be banging their heads on their ceiling. They cannot get through it.
(and a piss up in Andora is not going to do much is it?)

And this is not recent.
I've seen loads of really good and promising players suddenly STOP!
Joe Redpath, at one time I would have put £1,000 on him becoming a GM.
(Still could, he just needs re-kindle that bright flame that made him fall in love with the game again.)

We use to have our good players prorgressing. Motwani, McNab and Condie.

Something somewhere is going and has gone wrong.
Is their natural talent being coached out who?

I have to blame the computer and misue and abuse of it.

I wonder how times in the recent Scottish analysis room an interesting position arose and one or both
of the players shrugged their shoulders and said 'I'll look at it tonight with Fritz?' and off they go
to have an ice cream and chase some piece of skirt.

Good chess players would stay with that position till it has been squeezed dry and have complete faith
in their ability not to even check their analysis with a computer.

It's either computers and how these lads are using them or the Scottish Grading System.

There is nothing wrong with the Scottish Grading System. It's on.
Maybe if it was as rigged and as unbalanced as the English system then we too could have
masses of falsely higher graded players and the Scottish players may work harder at OTB study


Plan A:

I'll organise a weekend training session for the top 25 promising players. No computers!
I'll have no trouble getting 25 - the country is flooded with them all waiting to reach their 2300 peak
and go no higher.

Next grading list you slip them an extra couple of hundred GP's.
They will think 'Hey this OTB studying with a thing called a book really works."

(None of them will think this is odd or question their grading rise, if they are stupid enough to
think that a computer can help them improve at chess then you could sell these clowns anything.)

They will turn off their wee electronic toys and start studying Chess. - just like you did.
Just like Motwani, Mcnab and Muir did, just like the current Scottish Champion Roddy McKay did.

It is the only way we are going to get these guys sorted out.
Perhaps it'd be interesting to know how each of the top players do actually study Geoff? I mean, how do you know they all use computers all the time?
Geoff Chandler Wrote:(and a piss up in Andora is not going to do much is it?)

Woahhhh, we're not all alcoholics. Tongue
Alex McFarlane Wrote:Finally, I hope everyone will again join with me in thanking the anonymous benefactor.

Yes indeed! A lot of chess activity has been made possible by their generosity.

Alex McFarlane Wrote:TPR favours the lower rated player because they are lower rated. Consider A v B where A is lower rated and they draw. A has the better performance because he scored against a higher rated player whereas B scored against the lower rated player.”

Ah yes, thanks Alex. In a 9 round Swiss that game would make a difference of 400/9 =44.4 presumably. Though, the effect of the opponents that are 400 below on the TPR, the way it’s calculated, is higher than that. For example, if a player had enough such opponents, then even with 9 out of 9 they couldn’t reach a TPR of 2400.

Still, such 400-below pairings do make it much more feasible for the player to reach an outright winning score, and that would outweigh the reduction in their chance of winning a (possibly multiple) tie break. So, no complaints would really be justified on those grounds.

Your example does highlight a very fundamental flaw in TPRs. What is (presumably) wanted is the level of rating performance that is the most likely given a player’s results; whereas the TPR merely attempts to estimate the rating which would predict their actual score

There seems to be no science concerning performances in small numbers of games – it even seems to be a concept lacking in definition. But as it’s supposed to relate to the rating system when over 30 games, wouldn’t some kind of scaling towards the present rating (based on the number of games) help? Eg, if the tournament was 9 games, take 9/30 of the difference between the TPR (as calculated) and the present rating.

I understand that the appeal of the TPR is that it is independent of the existing rating; but as that’s what seems to make it unsound, wouldn't bringing in the present rating rectify that - when the purpose is to do with measurement!?

Re playoffs, I don't believe a later full chess playoff is worthwhile when the championship has been embedded. If the aim is to produce the player with the strongest performance then it's is most likely to met by a 'sound' TPR. With the TPR as it stands, I think a rapid play contest would be better.
Hi Andrew.

" do you know they all use computers all the time?"

It's obvious.

When was the last time you saw one of these guys walking around with a chess book in their hands.

They talk of a position being o.87 of a pawn up.

Look at their posts on here. Their command of the language is zilch. It's Fritz speech.

But the dead give away is their scores sheets. Instead of writing 'castles' they are using 0-0 or 0-0-0.

They are recording their moves in binery!


I've bee trying thank the anonymous benefactor anonymously but my name keeps appearing when I post.

(is there anyway I can post without seeing it's me. I fancy a shot at arguing with myself.)

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