Staunton Memorial 2008

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TomChivers
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Staunton Memorial 2008

Post by TomChivers » Fri Aug 08, 2008 3:02 pm

Only twenty four hours later, the results of the first round!

A PGN download for play-through is on the left.

Some interesting moments. In particular Werle's victory over Cherniaev featured a nice exchange sacrifice.

John Moore
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Re: Staunton Memorial 2008

Post by John Moore » Fri Aug 08, 2008 4:24 pm

Anyone know whether we get live games at the Staunto Memorial after the British has finished.

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Carl Hibbard
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Re: Staunton Memorial 2008

Post by Carl Hibbard » Fri Aug 08, 2008 9:11 pm

John Moore wrote:Anyone know whether we get live games at the Staunto Memorial after the British has finished.
Sorry more is the pity but I don't appear to be hosting that one :(
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TomChivers
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Re: Staunton Memorial 2008

Post by TomChivers » Sat Aug 09, 2008 10:00 am

John Moore wrote:Anyone know whether we get live games at the Staunto Memorial after the British has finished.
Last year they managed to beam the games as far as the bar the other side of the tournament hall, by videoing the usually-inaccurate demonstration boards and feeding that through to a projector. Eric Schiller I think explained that the electronic boards required to send the moves to the internet were ugly, so they didn't want to use them. I think maybe even the same applied to electronic clocks, so the old-fashioned kind were used. I wouldn't expect many technological developments (?) this year.

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John Saunders
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Re: Staunton Memorial 2008

Post by John Saunders » Sat Aug 09, 2008 2:19 pm

I can fully corroborate Tom's comments. The Staunton people are unapologetic about their tardiness in publishing info to the outside world...

http://www.atticuschess.org.uk/forum/ph ... =3434#3434

It is interesting to reflect that in 1845 Howard Staunton played a game by telegraph from Gosport against players located many miles up the railway line in London. So, 163 years ago, it was possible to play distance chess in real time, but now it is too difficult for the people who purport to memorialise said gentleman to send the scores of six chess games out to the world from the centre of a major metropolis in much under 24 hours. So much for progress.
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Re: Staunton Memorial 2008

Post by John Upham » Sat Aug 09, 2008 2:51 pm

Are the games being broadcast on ICC or PlayChess?
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John Saunders
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Re: Staunton Memorial 2008

Post by John Saunders » Sat Aug 09, 2008 3:15 pm

No. They are not using electronic boards.
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Re: Staunton Memorial 2008

Post by John Upham » Sat Aug 09, 2008 3:22 pm

John Saunders wrote:No. They are not using electronic boards.
Is this decision inorder to play homage to way chess was played in the good old days?

Are adjournments encouraged?

Perhaps they should have limited all games to start within Howard Stauntons opening repertoire? :)

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Alasdair MacLeod
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Re: Staunton Memorial 2008

Post by Alasdair MacLeod » Sat Aug 09, 2008 6:32 pm

I visited the tournament on Thursday and yesterday at about 5pm. I was lucky in both times that I could see the last 40 or so minutes of both Short and Adams' games.

In both rounds, when I arrived at about 5pm, the only games that had finished were Bob Wade's. With all due respect to Bob, the place he is taking up should have gone to a strong English junior. I'm embarrassed about that for the tournament and English chess. :oops:

My overall impression was that it was a small improvement on last year's tournament - better presentation, better placing of the boards and we were treated to Short and Adams being placed close to the audience for every round, for obvious reasons. Talking about the audience, there were at least twice as many there than last year.....and most of them were like a Who's Who of the London League, having played against 2 or 3 of them myself! The best bit for me was to be able to easily see the post-mortems close up in the bar/lounge area.

Digital clocks are being used but in the Short-Timman game I couldn't see what the clock times were so had no idea that Short was in time trouble. When the game was over, it was apparent that Short had lost on time making his 40th move in a decent position for him. Has he still not learned from Game 1 of 1993 World Championship? :?

Anyway, I was glad to have seen Adams' wins and seeing live his opponents resigning. :D

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Re: Staunton Memorial 2008

Post by David Robertson » Sat Aug 09, 2008 6:59 pm

I agree with Alasdair MacLeod. Bob Wade's selection is embarrassing. In fact I think it's far worse than embarrassing, and have said as much on my own 'blog' when the matter was raised by one poster earlier (NB 'jaffacake' is a very strong club amateur). As you can see, I think the decision to invite Bob Wade was exceptionally poorly-judged from a number of perspectives. I include my original text below. The full thread is here (Staunton comments from p.3):

http://www.atticuschess.org.uk/forum/ph ... 7&start=32
jaffacake wrote:
I find it incredible that Bob Wade is playing in this tournament and not any number of young English players who might have benefitted
"Incredible", it isn't; alas it's all too credible in the smug, inward-facing world of the aging British chess Establishment. But "ridiculous" it is. Selecting an 87-year old Bob Wade to take on this field probably caused a chortle of tuck-shop glee amongst the cosy coterie setting up this event. Think of the PR coup; think of the 'world record' set. Yeah, right :roll:

Out here in the real world where people might be interested in, but not obsessed by chess, the decision looks simply sad. I'd go further and say that, as a promoter of events, I'd not have allowed it. Selecting Bob Wade is, in my opinion, unacceptable exploitation, regardless of whether Wade is a willing party. No good can come of it for Wade; no good for chess either. Wade should score 0, maybe 0.5, maybe 1. In short, it will be a public humiliation in very poor taste. After all the joshing is over, the back-slapping and "for-he's-a-jolly-good-fellow", what will be left is a defeated old man. Bob Wade deserves better in his final years than to have the record show this embarrassment.

I'd have thought the Staunton Memorial sponsors would want something better too than to have their tournament's historic record disfigured by a manifest 'no contest'. It simply isn't sporting - as I'm sure the players will privately concede

But I doubt any of the "oh-so-pleased-with-themselves" idiots who thought this up will have taken the idea of 'good sport' to heart - except as an exercise in cruelty towards the weak and vulnerable masquerading as a publicity stunt.

And on that latter point, exactly which section of the Public needs its attention attracted by the stunning news: "Old Bloke Plays Chess"? Just how does this challenge the public image we currently struggle against?

At least in the British Championships here in Liverpool these past two weeks, I saw something of the future. And it's reasonably encouraging. Gawain Jones was invited to play in the Staunton, but declined in favour of winning the Brits. Good for him. It was the right decision in this case, no matter the final outcome.

We need to look forward into the 21st century, not backwards to Howard Staunton's 19th century glory days

David

ps. actually, from his first two games, Bob Wade's play is everything you might expect from an 87-year old - not merely poor, but pitiful. His Rd 1 loss to Timman was the sort of nonsense I might play, dropping a N to a miscalculation (1-0, 23) But his Rd 2 loss to Peter Wells was pitiful: Wade shipped a pawn for nothing, patzer-style, on move 8 but played on to the embarrassing end (1-0, 35). Maybe he'll perk up with White.

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Re: Staunton Memorial 2008

Post by Jonathan Bryant » Sat Aug 09, 2008 10:16 pm

Alasdair MacLeod wrote:When the game was over, it was apparent that Short had lost on time making his 40th move ...
Actually Short had made his move and pressed the clock. Timman was thinking for a few seconds and had clearly not noticed Short's flag had fallen before he moved. Several seconds after Short pressed his clock Schiller stepped in and said something to the players.

Confusion reigned (for me at least) until it became clear that Short had lost on time. Personally, I think a win on time should be claimed by the opponent and an aribiter should not step in and point it out.

Btw: because digital clocks were being used even though I was sitting right in front of the board I had no idea Short was low on time either. Timman had thought for ages in the opening and I had actually imagined it was him in time trouble and I thought Schiller was defaulting him - especially since he waited until after Short pressed his clock to step in.

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Re: Staunton Memorial 2008

Post by Jonathan Bryant » Sat Aug 09, 2008 10:22 pm

David Robertson wrote:I agree with Alasdair MacLeod. Bob Wade's selection is embarrassing.
I'm pretty sure the reason they went for Bob Wade was for publicity - pushing the world record for oldest competitor angle. I've no idea what the general public thinks of this.

I don't know about today's (saturday's game) so what I'm about to say may already be inaccurate but frankly I wouldn't be surprised if Bob Wade scored 0 in the tournament. It wouldn't have been out of the question for him to have resigned after 20 minutes play against Peter Wells on Friday and it's not unreasonable to suggest he really should have thrown the towel in a good hour before he did.

I don't think it an exaggeration to suggest that even I might have beaten him on Friday (I'm 140BCF) but I wouldn't use the term "embarrasing" to describe Bob Wade's inclusion in the tournamen. Yes he's certainly going to be outclassed by some margin. Does that makes it wrong? I'm not sure - the guy's done enough for chess to perhaps deserve a chance in this tournament should he want to take it.

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Re: Staunton Memorial 2008

Post by TomChivers » Sun Aug 10, 2008 2:04 pm

Two interesting responses on the official website to all this . . .

A Note from the Organisers

There have been some rumblings on various web and blog sites about the speed with which we are putting up information on our website www.howardstaunton.com

Those who are disgruntled should remember that we are celebrating a master from the 19th century, a champion who played by candlelight and who lived in an age before communication became instant. In accordance with tradition we are playng the 6th staunton memorial at simpsons in the strand , where the immortal game itself was created in 1851. We opened the event with champagne and a candlelit roastbeef dinner at simpsons, and our philosophy is not to be intimidated by the cries for instant gratification which are so rife?

I have seen so many modern websites where the organisers feel their duty is done simply by having a live feed to the games-no notes-no explanations no atmosphere or background. we, on the other hand, take the view that we can gain more by going for a complete experience -not just speed. Our team which includes one gm, myself, and the fritz analysis engine , as well as Dr Schiller, Julian Simpole and Steve Giddins, sits down each day after being fortified by a traditional english breakfast of bacon, sausages, eggs toast and marmalade, and then we write a careful report and analyse what we consider to be the best game of each round.

Later that afternoon the games , commentary and analysis all go up on the website,hopefully generating a much richer read for the website visitors. By this careful method we found Nigel Short's brilliant missed tactical win with Nd6 which wd not even have been mentioned by the live games system operated by most other tournament websites-we like to believe we are a thinking website-not just a reproductive one!!

Ray Keene OBE



Ageist remarks


For the UKs strongest tournament - which has succeeded for three years now in enlisting a major sponsor - the Staunton Memorial is attracting its predictable share of envious sniping , again from various minor websites. One other - frankly ageist - gripe I have noticed is that we should have left out Bob Wade OBE and preferred a uk junior. Well, in the past the Staunton Memorial has invited Howell, Jones and Jovanka Houska to mention a few talented youngsters. This year we could not get acceptances from the young players we hoped to invite so we turned to the opposite end of the spectrum and invited Bob Wade - who was delighted to accept!! I asked him to think about his participation carefully but he was very enthusiastic .

it has always seemed a shame to me to relegate veterans - who would like to play in mainstream events - to sections restricted to the over 60's or whatever - throwing golden oldies like Bent Larsen on the scrapheap is all too common. My belief is that our invite to Bob - far from being a negative move - was a blow against ageism in chess. Bob may do badly - indeed he may do very badly - but he wanted to play and I think his involvement is an interesting departure.

Just to let readers evaluate the intellectual level of the criticisms levelled against the Staunton organisation - one website I noticed lambasted us for not having juniors in the line up - and then - with impeccable lack of logic - proceeded to congratulate one junior for turning down his invitation and deciding to play in the british instead!! I love it!

All I can say to that - with Alexander Pope is -

Who would not laugh if such a one there be
Who would not weep if ATTICUS were he!
I'm not really sure of my opinion on all this. Both sides have plausible things to say.

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Re: Staunton Memorial 2008

Post by John Moore » Sun Aug 10, 2008 3:36 pm

Probably a dozen young players graded 2300+ would have been interested, you imagine - but then I simply don't know and Ray Keene and his sponsors do, you suppose. Pleased to see that Bob wanted to have a go - and, hopefully, he might score something but even at his best, solidity wasn't his strong point.

"Envious sniping from various minor websites" sounds like Ray at his pompous best - presumably written after he has digested his breakfast - what was that all about by the way!!

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Re: Staunton Memorial 2008

Post by John Moore » Sun Aug 10, 2008 3:56 pm

Should have added - did Staunton play by candlelight! I am no expert but I thought London was lit by gas by 1835 at the latest.

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