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My last OTB tourny was the Southern Open and I experienced something totally new...
I played a blind player. That's right a blind player. His name was Henry and was an older gentleman and a gentleman to the truest sense of the word.
I used my board and he used a smaller board. The pieces had little pegs at the bottom that would fit into round holes in the center of each square. This kept them from falling over when he felt the pieces. So obviously, touch move did not apply to him. The white pieces also had an 1/8" (3mm) of the head of a pin sticking out from the top so Henry could identify which were White and which were Black pieces.
If it was my turn, I would call out my move by stating the piece being moved, from what square and to what square (e.g. Bishop at c1 to g5). Henry would repeat the statement/move into a recorder. We would echo each other this way throughout the whole game.
The time controls for the tourny were G/120 SD/60 meaning if the game made to 40 moves within the 120 minutes, 1 hr would be added to the total.
In Henry's case, we just played the game at G/180 on an analog clock.
Henry played quite well and had a nasty discover attack to get back to an equal game but ended up blundering his Queen away and politely resigned.
Ill never forget that game or the opponent.
One more note: It was the very first game played on my brand new tournament chess set.
Has anyone else played a blind player at a tourny?
I once played not an absolutely blind player, but a one with so poor sight that he also had to use this little board. It was 7 or 8 years ago and we were both rated 1400. He blundered a knight in a better position. It happens very often by blind players, it's very hard to play 4 hours without seeing the board and not blundering at all.
(Hey Kacparov! Good luck on your exams... my students have state tests next week)
Yea... the game was going into the 5th hour when he hung his Queen. Up to that point it was back and forth... I was very impressed by his play.
A college teammate played a blind fellow in the college championships once. It was the first time I'd ever seen a blind person playing chess. The setup was similar to what you describe, a board with pegged pieces that he could feel.
Even though the blind guy was a good player, we never tired of giving our friend a hard time for losing to a blind person.
Yea... my students would not leave me alone about it either... I had to beat a blind player to draw even (2.5) at the tournament in the last round. Still Henry did play well. I had to constantly remind myself to play the board and not him.
this is not new boards for blind players have been out ever since the 1900's this is the first someone has talked about it though I thought everyone already new about it.
Well, it was new for me and my friends. I knew blind players played tournament chess, but did not know how. It was a very interesting experience.
It was the black pieces that had the metal peg on them.
Oh yeah remember check your checks
lol. the talk about it on the way back was priceless. "he just didn't see that blunder"......well of course, he didnt see anything! no offense to him though... i cant even imagine doing that! playing blind chess must take some serious skill.
lol, maybe we should post that game
We have a blind player on our OTB league team. He is not completely sightless but is enough that he has to use the small board, recorder, etc. He plays a board position or two above me usually being about 1800.
I played a blind player some months ago ... I posted the game here. It was a team tournament - my club vs. the blind's chess club (there are so many of them over here that they have their own club), and the atmosphere was quite different from a normal tourney round - especially as far as the noise level is concerned, everyone is calling out the moves aloud, you have to get used to it. My opponent was completely blind too, he had a Braille scoresheet and some tool he used to punch the moves into it.
you go ahead I'll just watch im not ready to die
Inspiring story, I respect such people a lot, it must have been a very nice & interesting experience.
please give the link
I never heard of him playing an actual tournament, but Ray Charles was a huge chess fan, and supposedly an expert-level player.
LOL... why you two little.... In case anybody is wondering, Mr. Cookie and 4806758745+5473994are two of my students who did quite well at the Southern Open. We heard the moves being called out and echoed back during the tournament. When I was put on board #95 for the last round, I still didn't realize I was playing Henry until I got to the table where he was playing. I think I do need to post the game here with commentary.
Which section did you play in at the Southern Open ??
Hey Reb! DC_cookie and I played in the under 1500 section while my other student played in the under 1200 section. Were you there? Did you see the end results in the under 1800 section?... six way tie for first.
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