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November 21st, 2012

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Sam wins 2012 Cape Town Blitz Tournament

The 2012 Cape Town blitz tournament was held 21 November, at the usual venue. Eleven players entered this year, including a lightning visit from Konrad Scheffler who jetted in from San Diego specifically for the event.

After four of the five rounds only two players were left unbeaten, Sam Scott and Chris Welsh, which allowed a single winner to be declared, in contrast to previous years with multiple players with the same number of wins. In the end Sam prevailed by time, despite arguably being behind on the board (although a complex ko fight still needed to be resolved).

1 – Sam Scott 3d (5 wins)
2 – Chris Welsh 1d (4 wins)
2 – Andrew Davies 3d (4 wins)
4 – Konrad Scheffler 2d (3 wins)
4 – Paul Steyn 4d (3 wins)

In case anyone is interested, 11 of the 25 games were decided by time, 8 by points, and 6 by resign.

In the opinion of the tournament director, too many games are still being won by the stronger player, despite the games being full handicap games. Suggestions welcome on how to make the event more even. Increasing komi is one option, but this only affects games beyond 9 stones.

Posted by Chris Welsh in Cape Town, Tournaments


This entry was posted on Wednesday, November 21st, 2012 at 1:08 pm and is filed under Cape Town, Tournaments. You can follow any responses to this entry through the comments RSS 2.0 feed. You can skip to the end and leave a response. Pinging is currently not allowed.

5 Responses to “Sam wins 2012 Cape Town Blitz Tournament”

  1. StephenM says:

    “… too many games are still being won by the stronger player, despite the games being full handicap games.”

    Is the probability of a result being dictated by the clock (win or loss on time) independent of the difference in ranks between the players?

    If not, perhaps the solution is an n-second-per-stone bonus to the weaker player’s clock.

  2. Chris Welsh says:

    Your less than subtle attempt to introduce fischer time is noted 🙂

    My belief is that the additional experience of playing with clocks that the stronger player has is the decisive aspect. In other words, the stronger players are more used to getting into the correct rhythm that the compressed time demands, and playing a sufficiently good move sufficiently quickly. The weaker player (aka less experienced player) finds it harder to play a move at their level in a consistently short time.

    Since the handicaps are more or less correct when played at slow speeds, some factor related to the compressed time is clearly involved.

    I dare say one could come up with some kind of formulaic adjustment to the time relating to the handicap difference, but unless this was a formula that reduced the white’s time by as much as black’s time was increased, this would cause scheduling problems in a tournament.

  3. max says:

    Maybe we just need to play more blitz games? We could have a blitz night, say once a month, to gain some experience with fast time controls.

  4. StephenM says:

    Oops. I meant an n-second-per-handicap-stone bonus, perhaps amplified for handicap stones beyond the first nine.

    For example, a nine-stone game might give white 12 minutes and black 14 minutes.

  5. Chris Welsh says:

    As stated above, to avoid scheduling difficulties, the addition to black must be compensated by a subtraction from black. So to use your example, white would have 11 and black 13.

    Note also that second-level granularity will be impossible with crude chess clocks. This effectively rules out any formulaic method that has seconds as part of the formula (unless the formula always rounds off to minutes at the end).

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