Avoiding Shameful Draws In Chess Shows

Avoiding Shameful Draws In Chess Shows

Jun 25, 2015, 8:22 PM |

The last round of Norway Chess has raised a huge problem in today's chess world, as the main game of the round -- Topalov-Anand -- ended in a draw after only 18 moves.

It's easy to understand players why they act like this, why would they take a risk if they feel totally ok with the current situation? But if we think about the viewers, what they want is a good Show. In fact, Maurice Ashley have said during the live show that discouraging draws like this are actually ruining all of the efforts to promote chess on TV.

And actually it might be a very simple solution: if players draw their classical game, they have to play a blitz match till 3 wins for one of them, and the player who had black pieces in the classic, starts the blitz match with white pieces.

You may say that current chess rules don't matter because Norway has a huge chess boom right now, and their TV channels have chess shows all the time, but let's not forget that the current world champion is norwegian.

Do you know that America had an even bigger chess boom when Bobby Fischer was crushing soviet chess machine? But you all sure know what happened with chess in the US after Fischer's disappearence. So this Norwegian chess boom may vanish as fast as it emerged.

Every major sport has solved this drawing problem by having some sort of a tie break system that gives a way to get a clear winner. And usually it's a shootout, like in hockey and soccer. Maybe it's time for the chess community to learn a lesson from them.

I can hardly imagine that such a fundamental change in chess rules may come from the FIDE, we all know how corrupt and sluggish this institution is (if you don't, watch any Garry Kasparov's interview about it), so it's obvous that this change have to come from the bottom, from the viewers and the organizers who want to have a great chess show.

A revolutionary tournament like this will almost surely not get credit from the FIDE and it may reject such tornament's results to affect FIDE ratings, so we have to find a way to get players interested by something else then gaining FIDE rating points.

"Land of the Free, Home of the Brave" has introduced to the world all of the major innovations of the last decades and such a chess Revolution may be one of them.

"Millionare Chess" is my hope now! This event has a prize pool that would make all players forget about FIDE ratings and fight brutally for the win. And I'm sure that Maurice Ashley and other organizers are very interested to make a beautiful chess show like never before.

So please tell me guys, what do you think about having a blitz match tie breaks if a classical chess game ends in a draw?