Survey of league chess

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Adam Raoof
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Re: Survey of league chess

Post by Adam Raoof » Sun Feb 13, 2011 3:14 pm

John Upham wrote:
Paul Buswell wrote: In the top division the two teams from Hastings & St. Leonards have played 40 games so far against other clubs (8 matches of 5 boards). In only one game of those 40 have both players opted at the start for QPF rather than adjudication.

Yes, you read that figure the right way round.

PB

Paul,

What is the age profile of the players referred to?
Does this mean that 21 out of 40 of those players wanted a quickplay finish, but that in the league adjournments are the default position in the event of disagreement? Is it simply that Hastings players always opt for adjournments?
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Paul Buswell
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Re: Survey of league chess

Post by Paul Buswell » Sun Feb 13, 2011 4:41 pm

Adam Raoof wrote:
John Upham wrote:
Paul Buswell wrote: In the top division the two teams from Hastings & St. Leonards have played 40 games so far against other clubs (8 matches of 5 boards). In only one game of those 40 have both players opted at the start for QPF rather than adjudication.

Yes, you read that figure the right way round.

PB

Paul,

What is the age profile of the players referred to?
Does this mean that 21 out of 40 of those players wanted a quickplay finish, but that in the league adjournments are the default position in the event of disagreement? Is it simply that Hastings players always opt for adjournments?

Adam: adjudication, not adjournment.

Sorry, I wasn't at any of the matches in question so can't answer these questions, except to comment that adjudication is indeed the default position unless QPF is agreed at board level at start of play.

PB

Simon Spivack
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Re: Survey of league chess

Post by Simon Spivack » Sun Feb 13, 2011 5:09 pm

Roger de Coverly wrote:I cite the London League because forty years ago, it was near unique among leagues in having adjournment sessions. I think in those days, it was 30 moves in one and half hours, followed by 20 an hour. Adjudication could be insisted on at move 60 ( or was it 50?).
Adjudication at sixty. Now seventy-two, unless there's been a change I've overlooked.

I can't recall the wording of the rules that far back, even though I was playing in London then, however, there have been two forms in the capital. The easiest is to state the number of moves per session, i.e. thirty per ninety minutes for all sessions in the above instance. The other is to give an hourly rate and then stipulate the length of the playing session, one then calculated what the time controls were. This latter version was traditionally followed in the Middlesex League; there being two standard lengths of playing session, two and one half and three hours.

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Re: Survey of league chess

Post by James Toon » Sun Feb 13, 2011 5:40 pm

Richard Bates wrote:On QP/Adjournment etc, the survey fails to draw what is IMO a fairly fundamental distinction between leagues where the decision is taken (whatever the default option) at board level, and leagues where the decision is taken at match level (ie. once agreed, same format for all boards).

Incidentally, how did you classify the London League, since in the top division it has BOTH default QP AND default Adjournment?
In the survey, there were nine leagues where adjournment was available as a secondary option (i.e. by mutual agreement). I have information on six of those. In all cases, agreement was at the board level rather than the team level.

Why is this fundamental?

I classified the London League as having a default option of adjournment and a secondary option of quickplay. This is what happens in most divisions. The 1st Division is different in the default option is 50% quickplay and 50% adjournment (a unique arrangement). I referred to this in the comments on the London League entry, but it did not affect the stats. Adjournment in the London League 1st Division is also at the board level.

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Christopher Kreuzer
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Re: Survey of league chess

Post by Christopher Kreuzer » Sun Feb 13, 2011 6:00 pm

Simon Spivack wrote:
Roger de Coverly wrote:I cite the London League because forty years ago, it was near unique among leagues in having adjournment sessions. I think in those days, it was 30 moves in one and half hours, followed by 20 an hour. Adjudication could be insisted on at move 60 ( or was it 50?).
Adjudication at sixty. Now seventy-two, unless there's been a change I've overlooked.
I don't know when the change was made, but the current London League rules don't seem to allow for players to insist on adjudication (unless they are a blind player):

http://www.lcl.streamlinenettrial.co.uk/rop.htm

"8(a) A blind player may submit a claim for adjudication at the end of any session provided that before the start of play in that session he notifies his opponent of his intention to do so."

"11. ADJUDICATIONS (APPLIES TO 8(a) ONLY)"

That seems to be clear that everyone else has to play on or agree a result.

In contrast, the rules of the Thames Valley League (the other league I play in) explicitly says (it is in rule 16):

"If a game is adjourned then the players can agree, before the commencement of any session, to have a quickplay finish at the end of that session. If there is not a quickplay finish, then either player can insist on adjudication after black's 70th move, or at any later time by either player, but only between playing his move and stopping the clock."

This (seeming) lack of being able to force adjudication in the London League had/has had an impact on two games I have (and am still) playing this season.

The first game reached a rook endgame where I judge that I was losing (in terms of a position being adjudicated) from about move 50. When we got to move 53 (the capture of my last pawn), we were in tablebase territory (K+R vs K+R+2P) and the position was confirmed by the tablebases as winning for my opponent on every subsequent move until he blundered on move 70 (the time control for that playing session was at move 72, but I was the one in time trouble, not him).

My move 71 gave him the opportunity to resume a winning line, but if I had made the correct move here and had been able to claim adjudication, that would have been an instant draw (dunno whether you need to make the playing session's time control first or not under such rules, but would have thought so). He was still winning on his move 71 and my move 72, but his 72nd move gave me a second chance to secure a drawn position, which I did by sealing the correct move. The point, though, is that because there is seemingly no adjudication, I had to play out the draw (which in some lines was not trivial). I would have opted for adjudication if it had been available, and I think anyone in a six-man ending would do likewise.

The second game is a K+Q+2P vs K+Q+P endgame, currently sealed on move 130 (after three sessions) with a fourth session to be played in the next few weeks. It is a seven-man ending, so not in the tablebases, and I have no clue what the result of any adjudication would have been (except that when I had a extra pawn that was also a passed pawn, the adjudication may have favoured me), but it has been a Q+P endgame from move 48 onwards (there were 6 pawns versus 5 pawns at that stage). The number of pawns was gradually whittled down over the next 70 moves or so (last capture was on move 120) and the last pawn move took place on move 124.

Incidentally, I would probably refuse to play in any league where adjudications were mandatory, so now I've realised that adjudications can be forced at move 70 or later in the Thames Valley League, I may (ironically) be more inclined to opt for a quickplay finish in the first or second session (I think that adjournment after the first session and quickplay finish in the second session combines the best of both options).

Does the survey include full details of which leagues allow adjudications to be forced at some point in the game?

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Re: Survey of league chess

Post by James Toon » Sun Feb 13, 2011 6:19 pm

Christopher Kreuzer wrote:
Simon Spivack wrote:
Roger de Coverly wrote:I cite the London League because forty years ago, it was near unique among leagues in having adjournment sessions. I think in those days, it was 30 moves in one and half hours, followed by 20 an hour. Adjudication could be insisted on at move 60 ( or was it 50?).
Adjudication at sixty. Now seventy-two, unless there's been a change I've overlooked.
Does the survey include full details of which leagues allow adjudications to be forced at some point in the game?
No, it doesn't go into that level of detail. I am aware through reading many sets of league rules that there are some leagues where one player can insist upon adjudication after an advanced number of moves. As I recall, these were mainly leagues where adjudication and adjournment were both available as a secondary option.

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Re: Survey of league chess

Post by Roger de Coverly » Sun Feb 13, 2011 6:52 pm

James Toon wrote:. As I recall, these were mainly leagues where adjudication and adjournment were both available as a secondary option.
If players are happy with the general notion of two sessions and a quick-play finish, but don't like the rapid nature of G/75 or G/90 equivalents, a hybrid 6 hour format would be to play 36 in 90 minutes, followed by adjournment, then 24 in 60 minutes and 30 minutes to finish. In total length it's the same as the international move rate of 40 in 120 minutes followed by 60 minutes to finish. This deals with problem, highlighted by Chris K, of a game lasting forever .

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Re: Survey of league chess

Post by Alasdair MacLeod » Sun Feb 13, 2011 7:11 pm

Christopher Kreuzer wrote:
....The second game is a K+Q+2P vs K+Q+P endgame, currently sealed on move 130 (after three sessions) with a fourth session to be played in the next few weeks. .....
:shock: Banging my head on the table, please tell me you are joking......thank god I am not your captain this season! (and that I will never be your opponent in the London League :) )

Malcolm Clarke
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Re: Survey of league chess

Post by Malcolm Clarke » Sun Feb 13, 2011 7:55 pm

Thank you very much for an interesting survey.

One point I will make is that from my experience of playing in the Civil Service League and the London Commercial League during the 1980's was that the majority of players are attached to employers which are based in Central London, whereas from my experience of the London League a greater proportion of players have to travel from outside the city to play.

With regard to the tossing of a coin to determine colours in individual games, I expect it is rarely done in tournaments where there is a need to give players an equal share of white and black pieces.

In the Southampton League we do not toss a coin, but with our higher divisions having teams play each other home and away, and an even number of boards in our lower division matches there is probably less need to. If say in one of our divisions where the teams meet on an home and away basis, the two top boards of the teams play each other on a regular basis it is probably better to ensure that each player has white in one of the two games.

One point is that for example you had a rule saying that the team winning the toss can have odds on the white boards, then if a team arrives late for the toss, it can benefit them if they know what the default option is in these circumstances.

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Re: Survey of league chess

Post by Roger de Coverly » Sun Feb 13, 2011 11:32 pm

Malcolm Clarke wrote:One point is that for example you had a rule saying that the team winning the toss can have odds on the white boards, then if a team arrives late for the toss, it can benefit them if they know what the default option is in these circumstances.
I have this recollection of stories about a team (or teams) possibly in the London League who exploited this rule. Their board order was designed to give both the white seekers and black seekers the colours they wanted. It became standard operating practice for the team to assemble in a nearby pub, but to allow time to sink their pints before "hurrying" to the match venue.

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Re: Survey of league chess

Post by Alex Holowczak » Sun Feb 13, 2011 11:44 pm

This survey has shown one rule in which the Birmingham League is unique: It has no catering for default times. If you play the standard adjournment game (30/75, 24/60, G/15), then you only lose once you've actually lost on time. So you can arrive an hour or more late, and theoretically still win.

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Re: Survey of league chess

Post by Christopher Kreuzer » Mon Feb 14, 2011 12:48 am

Alasdair MacLeod wrote:
Christopher Kreuzer wrote:
....The second game is a K+Q+2P vs K+Q+P endgame, currently sealed on move 130 (after three sessions) with a fourth session to be played in the next few weeks. .....
:shock: Banging my head on the table, please tell me you are joking......thank god I am not your captain this season! (and that I will never be your opponent in the London League :) )
It's true. Thankfully you only have to watch the first 36 moves from the adjacent board, and not the moves after that! :D

There are some interesting points about this game and how it played out (things that don't happen very often - I may, for example, have set a record by being 2 hours and 39 minutes behind on the clock when we sealed for the third time (this comes close to my opponent being able to think for a whole playing session on one move), and I came close to having to make two time controls within one playing session - think about it for a bit and you will see that this is technically possible), but I won't say more until the game finishes. I was, however, prompted to look up some stuff about longest games - I'll put that in another thread.

To get back on topic (sort of), do the leagues without adjudication make provisions for "endless games"? In theory, if both players play very slowly, and it is (say) 36 moves a session (as the London League is), then games exceeding 180 moves could go to a sixth playing session. Possibly this is why some leagues have adjudication provisions.

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Re: Survey of league chess

Post by James Toon » Mon Feb 14, 2011 7:13 am

Most of the adjournment leagues allow the game to reach its natural end. Only five leagues provide for the game to be resolved earlier.
- Birmingham, Hertfordshire and Wolverhampton use a quickplay finish at the end of the second session.
- Civil Service and North Gloucestershire use adjudication at the end of the second session.

Sean Hewitt

Re: Survey of league chess

Post by Sean Hewitt » Mon Feb 14, 2011 8:46 am

Alex Holowczak wrote:This survey has shown one rule in which the Birmingham League is unique: It has no catering for default times. If you play the standard adjournment game (30/75, 24/60, G/15), then you only lose once you've actually lost on time. So you can arrive an hour or more late, and theoretically still win.
Actually Alex, that's not quite true. If that was the case then
Birmingham & District Chess League wrote:1.1 All the games in the BDCL competitions shall be played in accordance with the Laws of Chess of the International Chess Federation unless otherwise provided by these Rules.
in the BDCL rules, would mean that the following FIDE law applies
FIDE laws of chess wrote:6.6 (a) Any player who arrives at the chessboard after the start of the session shall lose the game. Thus the default time is 0 minutes. The rules of a competition may specify otherwise.
But the Birmingham league rules do cater for default times
Birmingham & District Chess League wrote: 13.2 A game shall be lost by default:-
a) if a player shall fail to arrive at the venue for any session of a game before his time allowance has expired.
So this is deliberate, although I don't think I'd like to have to wait 75 minutes before being able to go home / to the bar.

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Re: Survey of league chess

Post by Alex Holowczak » Mon Feb 14, 2011 9:29 am

Sean Hewitt wrote:
Alex Holowczak wrote:This survey has shown one rule in which the Birmingham League is unique: It has no catering for default times. If you play the standard adjournment game (30/75, 24/60, G/15), then you only lose once you've actually lost on time. So you can arrive an hour or more late, and theoretically still win.
Actually Alex, that's not quite true. If that was the case then
Birmingham & District Chess League wrote:1.1 All the games in the BDCL competitions shall be played in accordance with the Laws of Chess of the International Chess Federation unless otherwise provided by these Rules.
in the BDCL rules, would mean that the following FIDE law applies
FIDE laws of chess wrote:6.6 (a) Any player who arrives at the chessboard after the start of the session shall lose the game. Thus the default time is 0 minutes. The rules of a competition may specify otherwise.
But the Birmingham league rules do cater for default times
Birmingham & District Chess League wrote: 13.2 A game shall be lost by default:-
a) if a player shall fail to arrive at the venue for any session of a game before his time allowance has expired.
So this is deliberate, although I don't think I'd like to have to wait 75 minutes before being able to go home / to the bar.
You can choose several time control options for the first session. 34/85, 36/90, 42/105. I don't know how often these are chosen in practice. I've offered 36/90 a few times for adjournment games, but no one has ever accepted the offer. By having no catering for default times, I meant that if there was no concept of a time-based default, it'd be equivalent to the player on that board losing on time. The game is not graded due to not having one move played on either side, and becomes a default that way instead. At least, that was my interpretation. :?

Perhaps "cater" was the wrong word. What I meant was that they have no specific "the default time is x minutes". They have a variable default time, and their specific provision for them is that you lose on time.

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