FIDE Laws - An Interesting Case

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Paul McKeown
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FIDE Laws - An Interesting Case

Post by Paul McKeown » Mon Dec 30, 2019 4:40 am

From the FIDE Laws of Chess:
https://www.fide.com/FIDE/handbook/LawsOfChess.pdf wrote:5. 1 b. The game is won by the player whose opponent declares he resigns. This immediately ends the game.
Clear?

1 - 0 if Black has declared his or her resignation; 0 - 1 if White has declared his or her resignation.

I feel, however, that this law is drafted from the wrong perspective.

I think it ought to say:
5. 1 b. The game is lost by the player who declares he resigns. This immediately ends the game.
Why?

I had a game a few months ago in a Richmond event, in which BOTH players resigned.

If I had applied the FIDE Law as read, surely then I ought to have scored the game 1 - 1 ?!

As it was an ungraded and unrated game, and I was feeling kindly disposed, I scored it 0.5 - 0.5.

However, I think the correct result in such a situation is 0 - 0. If it had been graded and/or rated, I would have consulted higher authority before submitting the results, but for pairings on the day, I would have treated it as 0 - 0.

Any thoughts from others?

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Michael Farthing
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Re: FIDE Laws - An Interesting Case

Post by Michael Farthing » Mon Dec 30, 2019 8:40 am

Surely, unless the players resigned exactly simultaneously the loss is to the person who resigned first? That immediately ends the game and the other player is not then able to resign because there is no game to resign from.
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Tim Spanton
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Re: FIDE Laws - An Interesting Case

Post by Tim Spanton » Mon Dec 30, 2019 8:48 am

Also, how do you know both players resigned? Unless you were on the spot and heard them both say simultaneously words to the effect of: "I resign," how would you know? The fact that they may have both handed in scoresheets recording a loss, doesn't mean they both actually resigned.

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Re: FIDE Laws - An Interesting Case

Post by Geoff Chandler » Mon Dec 30, 2019 11:24 am

Hi Paul,

I know you will be reluctant to reveal names but surely we can see the position where the double resignation took place.

Chess history furnishes us with players resigning in a won position (it happened to me twice OTB...my opponents resigned when winning)
But a mutual resignation is a new one and should be shared.

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Re: FIDE Laws - An Interesting Case

Post by Ian Thompson » Mon Dec 30, 2019 12:10 pm

Paul McKeown wrote:
Mon Dec 30, 2019 4:40 am
From the FIDE Laws of Chess:
https://www.fide.com/FIDE/handbook/LawsOfChess.pdf wrote:5. 1 b. The game is won by the player whose opponent declares he resigns. This immediately ends the game.
Any thoughts from others?
I don't think you're the first to point this out. I suspect you'll find it somewhere on the SCCU website from when Richard Haddrell was maintaining it.

Another potential flaw in the wording is what the result should be when a player resigns and it's not possible for his opponent to win due to insufficient material to mate - presumably 0 to the player who resigned and 0.5 to his opponent. Your suggested wording would clarify half of this.

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Re: FIDE Laws - An Interesting Case

Post by Paul McKeown » Tue Dec 31, 2019 1:04 am

Tim Spanton wrote:
Mon Dec 30, 2019 8:48 am
Also, how do you know both players resigned? Unless you were on the spot and heard them both say simultaneously words to the effect of: "I resign," how would you know? The fact that they may have both handed in scoresheets recording a loss, doesn't mean they both actually resigned.

https://beauchess.blogspot.com/
I was there. One knocked over their king and one said, "I resign." Both looked shocked when they realised that the other had resigned. I could hardly stop myself from laughing.

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Re: FIDE Laws - An Interesting Case

Post by Paul McKeown » Tue Dec 31, 2019 1:08 am

Geoff Chandler wrote:
Mon Dec 30, 2019 11:24 am
But a mutual resignation is a new one and should be shared.
I don't have the exact position, but the basics are that White and Black were both threatening mate in one, both thought the other was on the move. Neither had been scoring as both players (both fairly experienced 120s) were "on the increment".

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Re: FIDE Laws - An Interesting Case

Post by Paul McKeown » Tue Dec 31, 2019 1:15 am

Ian Thompson wrote:
Mon Dec 30, 2019 12:10 pm
I don't think you're the first to point this out. I suspect you'll find it somewhere on the SCCU website from when Richard Haddrell was maintaining it.
Thanks, that is interesting.
Ian Thompson wrote:
Mon Dec 30, 2019 12:10 pm
Another potential flaw in the wording is what the result should be when a player resigns and it's not possible for his opponent to win due to insufficient material to mate - presumably 0 to the player who resigned and 0.5 to his opponent. Your suggested wording would clarify half of this.
I see, that's also true.

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Re: FIDE Laws - An Interesting Case

Post by Paul McKeown » Tue Dec 31, 2019 1:17 am

Michael Farthing wrote:
Mon Dec 30, 2019 8:40 am
Surely, unless the players resigned exactly simultaneously the loss is to the person who resigned first? That immediately ends the game and the other player is not then able to resign because there is no game to resign from.
It was simultaneous, and both players agreed that they had resigned. I was present at the board and couldn't say which resignation preceded the other. It was time-trouble and the pace was hectic.

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Re: FIDE Laws - An Interesting Case

Post by Alex Holowczak » Tue Dec 31, 2019 6:17 am

Paul McKeown wrote:
Tue Dec 31, 2019 1:17 am
Michael Farthing wrote:
Mon Dec 30, 2019 8:40 am
Surely, unless the players resigned exactly simultaneously the loss is to the person who resigned first? That immediately ends the game and the other player is not then able to resign because there is no game to resign from.
It was simultaneous, and both players agreed that they had resigned. I was present at the board and couldn't say which resignation preceded the other. It was time-trouble and the pace was hectic.
I think by awarding the draw, you made a perfectly reasonable decision. I know the laws don't provide for this option, but if both players agreed that actually they didn't resign and wanted to carry on playing, then I would let them do that too. After all, the player who ends up losing can hardly complain about the fact, given he resigned earlier in the game anyway. :D

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Re: FIDE Laws - An Interesting Case

Post by Richard Bates » Tue Dec 31, 2019 9:18 am

Paul McKeown wrote:
Tue Dec 31, 2019 1:17 am
Michael Farthing wrote:
Mon Dec 30, 2019 8:40 am
Surely, unless the players resigned exactly simultaneously the loss is to the person who resigned first? That immediately ends the game and the other player is not then able to resign because there is no game to resign from.
It was simultaneous, and both players agreed that they had resigned. I was present at the board and couldn't say which resignation preceded the other. It was time-trouble and the pace was hectic.
Were they trying to fix the result for prize winning purposes*? ;)

*pre game agreement of no draw, and share prize money type of thing...

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Re: FIDE Laws - An Interesting Case

Post by David Sedgwick » Tue Dec 31, 2019 10:50 am

Alex Holowczak wrote:
Tue Dec 31, 2019 6:17 am
I think by awarding the draw, you made a perfectly reasonable decision. I know the laws don't provide for this option, but if both players agreed that actually they didn't resign and wanted to carry on playing, then I would let them do that too. After all, the player who ends up losing can hardly complain about the fact, given he resigned earlier in the game anyway. :D
Bozidar Kazic discussed a similar case in The Chess Competitor's Handbook, the forerunner to Stewart Reuben's The Chess Organiser's Handbook.

Unfortunately I don't have my copy of Kazic to hand - does anyone have one available?

From what I remember, one player moved an unmoved pawn forward two squares, realised that he had allowed a devastating en passant capture, and resigned.

The other player overlooked the en passant possibility, thought that he was getting mated, and resigned.

I can't recall what the decision was, or what Kazic thought that it should have been.

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Matt Mackenzie
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Re: FIDE Laws - An Interesting Case

Post by Matt Mackenzie » Tue Dec 31, 2019 5:09 pm

I have a copy ;)

Kazic said that the resignation of the player who had the move (ie didn't see the e.p) should have taken precedence.
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Kevin Thurlow
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Re: FIDE Laws - An Interesting Case

Post by Kevin Thurlow » Tue Dec 31, 2019 11:06 pm

"Kazic said that the resignation of the player who had the move (ie didn't see the e.p) should have taken precedence."

That is logical, as you don't usually resign when it's the opponent's move (except when his/her eyes light up when you move and you realise you've mislaid a queen...)

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Re: FIDE Laws - An Interesting Case

Post by Roger Lancaster » Wed Jan 01, 2020 1:41 pm

Paul McKeown wrote:
Tue Dec 31, 2019 1:04 am

I was there. One knocked over their king and one said, "I resign." Both looked shocked when they realised that the other had resigned. I could hardly stop myself from laughing.
I've always felt rather uncomfortable about knocked-over kings being taken as equivalent to resignation as the FIDE Laws don't mention this as a means of ending the game. And, of course, it's always possible to knock over one's king accidentally. What's an arbiter supposed to do when a player knocks over his king in an apparent act of resignation - but doesn't say anything or take any other action, such as stopping the clocks, which might be construed as ending the game - but shortly afterwards picks his king up and expresses surprise that anyone believed he had resigned?

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