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I've been playing 10|0 live games on chess.com, and I've recently been running into a strange (and incredibly frustrating) phenomenon. Sometimes I will play a game through, and as the game runs its course, it winds up in a drawn position. However, often times in this sort of game, I find myself down on time. I'm not talking about theoretical, R+B vs R "with best play by both sides" draws either. In that case I would understand if the other person wants to press on and test how well I know my endgames. I'm talking about positions where neither side can make any progress without a colossal blunder by their opponents. This position perfectly describes what i'm talking about.
This position arose after the 47th move, where after which I had 30 seconds remaining and my opponent had 2:30 left. Clearly my opponent, as White, can make no progress here. The knight gets captured anywhere it goes, and the king cannot pass the 5th rank. He has no winning chances. I am also at an impasse, for my bishop is stuck guarding my pawn at a3, and my king guarding the pawn at d4. I only later noticed that ...Kc7! would have won the game for me, so at the moment I would have been happy to accept a draw. My opponent, though, spent the next 18 moves moving his king around hoping to win on time, while I shuttled my bishop back and forth between b7 and c8. I ended up losing on time after my opponent's 75th move!
This is incredibly frustrating. Not only would any tournament director in the world uphold a protest, common decency should encourage everybody to accept a draw in this situation. I know that this sort of behavior is incredibly hard to adjudicate, but there should be more safeguards in place to prevent clearly drawn games to go to losses on time.
This one is a tough call. If your playing a live game, the position above appears to be a draw. I say "appears" because I'm not a GM or even a CM, thus I am being careful pronouncing the game a draw. However, if we assume the game is a dead draw, you bring up a good point. In tournament play, my opponent and I would probably look at one another and say "draw" in unison! I've played games in which my opponent asked for a draw and after looking over the position I say no. On many occasions, I've gone on to win. However, there have been occasions where it was a draw and I apologized to my opponent!
It would be nice if there was something in place (for Internet games) in which a warning that the position was likely to end in a draw. This way, both players would be able to see that they were entering into a potentially drawn game and act accordingly.
There are people who think it better to play to the bitter end even if it wastes every-one's time. Since there is no rule (here on chess.com) regarding that, it's considered acceptable. I've played games I'm losing looking for a stalemate position so I guess I'm offending someone. Thanks for the posting, you bring up a good point. Just prepare yourself for a few people adding their "two cents" into the thread, postings that have nothing to do with the topic.
You should have left a period, then this thread resurrect would some kind of a point.
5/23/2013 - The Long Road Home
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Concerned about trolling, again
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most obscure but awesome and useful opening
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