Taiwan Nationals 2014: part 3 -- Taichung qualifier


Last weekend, I dropped by the Taichung qualifier tournament, mostly to observe and to meet some friends.

In contrast to some of the other qualifiers in the past, the organizers had used at least some common sense. The zero start rule was not in effect. Instead, clocks were started on announced time. This is good and sensible.

It is common in Taiwanese chess tournaments that the organizers arrange food (lunch boxes, takeout etc) for the players. While this is a strange practice, it is (presumably) done to avoid taking a long lunch break (they try to keep it down to 20 minutes). For the first time I observed even the vegetarians and other special meals getting their meal too, together with everyone else. (Almost every time the organizers mess up on this).

The tournament area was quiet, partially because players who had finished their games and observers (including myself) were chased out (we were allowed to go in for a peek, but not to stay inside to watch). Considering how Taiwanese chess parents can be, I understand the decision.

The only real howler was an incompetent arbiter.

Someone made an illegal move, opponent calls the arbiter who just undoes the move on the board. No extra time was awarded for opponent, and no immediate loss of game occured (I thought it was said that the upcoming FIDE 2014 rules were to be used, and there illegal moves are an immediate loss). Instead the arbiter tells the player who erred which move to make, pointing on a piece and tapping the destination square with her finger. Even in FIDE 2014 rules, touch move is in effect, and the player making the illegal move should move the piece they already touched. And an arbiter in a national event should know this. Also, I find arbiters giving out moves to players a no-no, but I can not find anything in FIDE rules against that.

Overall, it was an almost reasonably arranged event, and congratulations to Austin who went through the qualifier winning every game.