Letter to Mayor of London from Moscow Federation

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John Upham
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Letter to Mayor of London from Moscow Federation

Post by John Upham » Wed Sep 26, 2012 12:26 pm

Just landed is this letter from the Moscow Federation to the Mayor of London:


MOSCOW CHESS FEDERATION
12 Begovaya St., Moscow, Russia, 125284
+7 (495) 945-75-22; moschess@mail.ru


Boris Johnson
Mayor of London


Dear Mayor Johnson,

Moscow, like London, is one of the world’s chess capitals, and Moscow Chess Federation applauds London for hosting the first Grand Prix in the new World Chess Championship Cycle.

Now London can build upon the Grand Prix and presence of the top world’s grandmasters by supporting chess in the city’s schools and chess clubs. It has been proven that playing chess has a beneficial impact on academic performance in schools and London could play a key role in the revival of the sport in England – a country with a proud history in the game. And London is nearly as cold and wet as Moscow during the dark winter months. What better sport than chess to occupy our efforts?!

I am delighted to invite you to visit the tournament that is currently taking place at Simpson’s-in-the-Strand between 12 of the world’s top grandmasters. Please feel free to contact me if you would like to attend on any day prior to the tournament’s conclusion on 3 October.

Thank you for supporting chess,
Sincerely,


Vladimir Palikhata,
President
Moscow Chess Federation
mcf_mayoroflondonFIN.doc
Letter to Mayor of London
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Joey Stewart
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Re: Letter to Mayor of London from Moscow Federation

Post by Joey Stewart » Wed Sep 26, 2012 12:28 pm

How did you get hold of this letter - Do you work for a certain tabloid newspaper?
Lose one queen and it is a disaster, Lose 1000 queens and it is just a statistic.

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Re: Letter to Mayor of London from Moscow Federation

Post by John Upham » Wed Sep 26, 2012 12:47 pm

Joey Stewart wrote:How did you get hold of this letter - Do you work for a certain tabloid newspaper?
It landed in my inbox...

Which certain newspaper?
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Re: Letter to Mayor of London from Moscow Federation

Post by Roger de Coverly » Wed Sep 26, 2012 1:16 pm

Vladimir Palikhata,
President
Moscow Chess Federation
It's strange that the President of the Moscow Chess Federation feels able to issue invitations to the Mayor of London to a London based chess event. You might expect it to be in the name of the Agon the organiser or perhaps FIDE.

It's only a few days since the ECF had a photo-op with Boris.
http://www.englishchess.org.uk/?p=21343
Last edited by Roger de Coverly on Wed Sep 26, 2012 1:28 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Letter to Mayor of London from Moscow Federation

Post by Leonard Barden » Wed Sep 26, 2012 1:19 pm

It's also strange considering that the London Grand Prix was originally scheduled for Russia in Chelabinsk but changed venue due to the Russian Chess Federation objecting to the number of non-Russian Grand Prix wildcards....

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Ihor Lewyk
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Re: Letter to Mayor of London from Moscow Federation

Post by Ihor Lewyk » Wed Sep 26, 2012 1:46 pm

that playing chess has a beneficial impact on academic performance in schools and London could play a key role in the revival of the sport in England

I find it interesting that Mr Palikhata refers to chess as a sport.

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Re: Letter to Mayor of London from Moscow Federation

Post by John Upham » Wed Sep 26, 2012 2:01 pm

Ihor Lewyk wrote: I find it interesting that Mr Palikhata refers to chess as a sport.
I'm hoping that England will be re-designated as a "developing country" by FIDE, the ECU and the like: there is strong and varied evidence to support this.
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Re: Letter to Mayor of London from Moscow Federation

Post by Roger de Coverly » Wed Sep 26, 2012 2:37 pm

John Upham wrote: I'm hoping that England will be re-designated as a "developing country" by FIDE, the ECU and the like: there is strong and varied evidence to support this.
Wales is more likely. One of the criterion is not having titled players, particularly Grandmasters.

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Re: Letter to Mayor of London from Moscow Federation

Post by John Upham » Wed Sep 26, 2012 3:04 pm

Roger de Coverly wrote: Wales is more likely. One of the criterion is not having titled players, particularly Grandmasters.
I was not considering numbers of titled players as evidence.

Some of the things that immediately spring to mind are:

Funding at all levels
Sponsorship at all levels
Attitudes from the national and local governments
Attitudes amongst non-specialist media
Efficiency and reach of the national governing body amongst its members (NOT an excuse to divert into tedious you-know-what discussions by you-know-who)
Numbers of persons who make a living or part-living from chess
Percentage of schools that support chess in some shape or form
Numbers of public chess playing spaces


That will do to kick-off...
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Roger de Coverly
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Re: Letter to Mayor of London from Moscow Federation

Post by Roger de Coverly » Wed Sep 26, 2012 3:24 pm

John Upham wrote: I was not considering numbers of titled players as evidence.
But FIDE do which is surely the relevant point.

http://www.fide.com/component/handbook/ ... w=category

Technical needs is in part defined by the absence of titled players.

http://www.fide.com/images/stories/NEWS ... ermuda.pdf

from which
The Chairman informed the Commission that the average rating of a Federation’s top 10
players was one of the main criteria used to revise the CACDEC List in 2008.
A cut-off of 2300, FIDE Master, and less that two Grandmasters was used for eligibility to
CACDEC List.
ENG are still in the top twenty based on the average rating of the top ten players.

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Re: Letter to Mayor of London from Moscow Federation

Post by Reg Clucas » Wed Sep 26, 2012 3:42 pm

Roger de Coverly wrote:
It's only a few days since the ECF had a photo-op with Boris.
http://www.englishchess.org.uk/?p=21343
Did anyone record the "10 uproarious moves" ?

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Paolo Casaschi
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Re: Letter to Mayor of London from Moscow Federation

Post by Paolo Casaschi » Wed Sep 26, 2012 3:43 pm

Roger de Coverly wrote:ENG are still in the top twenty based on the average rating of the top ten players.
This is in my opinion a very important difference between chess in England and other European countries (I have direct experience with Italy and Belgium, but the comparison with France and Germany might be even more impressive): in England there is a much wider gap between top player and grassroot amateur players. Not much in playing strengths, rather in comparing how England ranks in the FIDE top 10 players list versus how much activity is there for amateur players: look for instance how many FIDE rated player England has overall or how many FIDE rated events are played in England and so on. with respect to the top 10 list England scores very well, in the latter comparisons I believe England is disproportionately lagging behind. Again my personal impression, but amateur chess clubs seem to have more resources available (both people and money) in those countries with more to do for the average patzer.

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Re: Letter to Mayor of London from Moscow Federation

Post by Roger de Coverly » Wed Sep 26, 2012 4:10 pm

Paolo Casaschi wrote: Not much in playing strengths, rather in comparing how England ranks in the FIDE top 10 players list versus how much activity is there for amateur players: look for instance how many FIDE rated player England has overall or how many FIDE rated events are played in England and so on. with respect to the top 10 list England scores very well, in the latter comparisons I believe England is disproportionately lagging behind.
That's quite simply because most amateur chess is played at a move rate faster than acceptable for FIDE rating, whether in midweek evening leagues or in weekend Congresses. If you lived in the London area, you could with a bit of travelling and multiple club memberships, play a competitive game every night from Monday to Thursday most weeks during the winter season. At weekends, sometimes including Friday evenings, you could play every weekend even if you had to resort to a rapid-play or two every so often.

It's not nearly as large as perhaps it was twenty or thirty years ago, but the number of active players including juniors is around the fourteen thousand mark, with some of them playing over a hundred games in a full year.

Five players ran up more than 200 standard play games in a single grading season, so the opportunities to play are not missing.

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Paolo Casaschi
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Re: Letter to Mayor of London from Moscow Federation

Post by Paolo Casaschi » Wed Sep 26, 2012 4:30 pm

Roger de Coverly wrote:That's quite simply because most amateur chess is played at a move rate faster than acceptable for FIDE rating, whether in midweek evening leagues or in weekend Congresses.
I'm afraid you are a bit optimistic... it's not that simple.
Data are your friend: the latest ECF grading list from http://www.ecfgrading.org.uk/downloads/ includes about 12k graded players. This in the best case is what will fall into the compulsory membership scheme (actually it's slightly over-estimated since it includes foreign players that came to visit and fell into the grading list). In comparison, Germany has 16k players in the FIDE list and according to wikiepdia in 2010 they had 93k members. France has 11k players in the FIDE list and according to wikiepdia in 2008 they had 50k members. So it's not the fact that people play non-FIDE rated chess in this country, it's that fewer people play.

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Ihor Lewyk
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Re: Letter to Mayor of London from Moscow Federation

Post by Ihor Lewyk » Wed Sep 26, 2012 4:34 pm

So Roger. You are stating there are a lot of games being played in England which fall under the radar of FIDE.
A similar analogy could be made of games in Yorkshire that fall under the ECF radar.

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