Need sure points? QGD 5.Bf4, repetition Edition

“If you want to play for a draw, don’t leave anything to chance. Just force either a completely drawn ending or a perpetual.”
Magnus Carlsen

The first game below is proof that Magnus follows his own advice. Let’s see it:

Magnus claimed the draw to the arbiter without playing 19. Ke2. Is this a correct claim? FIDE laws of chess, rule 9.2 state:
“The game is drawn upon a correct claim by the player having the move, when the same position, for at least the third time (not necessarily by a repetition of moves):
a. is about to appear, if he first writes his move on his scoresheet and declares to the arbiter his intention to make this move, or
b. has just appeared, and the player claiming the draw has the move.
Positions as in (a) and (b) are considered the same, if the same player has the move, pieces of the same kind and colour occupy the same squares, and the possible moves of all the pieces of both players are the same.
Positions are not the same if a pawn that could have been captured en passant can no longer be captured in this manner. When a king or a rook is forced to move, it will lose its castling rights, if any, only after it is moved.”

Theoretically at move 15. Ke2 the king lost its right to castle as Geoff Chandler has noticed back then. This is different from 17. Ke2 and the probable 19. Ke2 when the king can no longer do that. This means that at 19. Ke2 the position would have repeated just a second time. Neither the players, nor the arbiter made any fuss about it and the game was declared a draw.

Why mention the above detail? It is because I have been made aware that an alarming number of ICCF players and arbiters do not know the FIDE rule 9.2. The ICCF server automatically accepts or rejects such a claim. This automation was implemented to speed up the process and eliminate confusion. Unfortunately it also points out to the users lack of knowledge on how this works. I suggest you avoid that, go over the rule and keep it in mind. You will need it at some point in time.

The second game shows a different move 6 by Black. The outcome is the same: a quick draw by repetition. There is nothing else to play for in that position:

Some claim that such games are non-combative and should not be allowed. The Sofia M-Tel Masters (2005-2009) tried to do something about it and had this rule:
“The players should not talk during the games; additionally they should not offer draws directly to their opponents. Draw offers will be allowed only through the Chief Arbiter in three cases: a triple repetition of the position, a perpetual check and in theoretically drawn positions. The Chief Arbiter is the only authority who can acknowledge the final result of the game in these cases.”
Later on at the Sinquefield Cup 2014 the exception to the Sofia Rules was used:
“If two players repeat three times before move 30, the arbiter can allow the draw to stand.”
What is your take on it?

Eugen Demian

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Valer Eugen Demian

Author: Valer Eugen Demian

The player – my first serious chess tournament was back in 1974, a little bit late for today’s standards. Over the years I have had the opportunity to play all forms of chess from OTB to postal, email and server chess. The journey as a player brought me a lot of experience and a few titles along the way: FIDE CM (2012), ICCF IM (2001) and one ICCF SIM norm (2004). The instructor – my career as a chess teacher and coach started in 1994 and continues strong. I have been awarded the FIDE Instructor title (2007) for my work and have been blessed with great students reaching the highest levels (CYCC, NAYCCC, Pan-Am, WYCC). I am very proud of them! See my website for more information. I have developed my own chess curriculum on 6 levels based on my overall chess knowledge and hands-on experience. A glimpse of it can be seen in my first chess app:
I can help you learn chess the proper way if this is what you seek! View all posts by Valer Eugen Demian

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