Olympiad experience

For most playing the Olympiad, this was a disaster of a tournament. Bad food, bad internet, ok hotels, RUBBISH location, decent playing conditions, inexperienced arbiters (who did not understand the three time repetition rule before move 30) and a general low-cost attitude to everything.

The internet coverage was probably not bad besides a glitch in round 1.

2014 and 2016 are both likely to be top-class events. Sadly I am now retired, but John, Colin and Andrew are all possible on the Scottish team by then! Maybe Cathy will play for the Scottish ladies team?!

9 thoughts on “Olympiad experience”

  1. “For most playing the Olympiad, this was a disaster of a tournament.”

    I will be one of the minority then. All Jacob says is true about the internet, food and especially the location, but since I played better than expected, I will remember the event fondly. I would remember it even more fondly if Scotland had not lost narrowly in the last round.

    Weirdest thing about the arbiters – some were trying to prevent players having bottles of water in the playing hall. So the games can last six hours or more (I had one game end on move 144) and no water to drink? Perhaps there was a mix-up or mistranslation somewhere, as other arbiters clearly had no problem with players having bottles of water. The Scottish solution to anti-water arbiters was to ignore them till they went away – that worked fine.

  2. I think the venue was passable… sure outside it was a little less than a dump, but inside I thought it was fine. Anyway, as far as I can recall there was no windows in the venue, so when you were playing it did not matter what it looked outside!

  3. @clickclick
    Yes, “decent” was my words. But actually, for spectators it was a disaster. Only board 1 of the first 10 tables in each session were visible, but the guards would push you exactly so far away that you could not see the board. I guess to be nice to the players, but it was just senseless.

  4. Sad to hear that Istanbul was horrid.
    Was there a presentation on Tromso 2014?
    I imagine that this will be organised properly, so might try to play.
    Is there info available re: venue?

  5. @clickclick

    Hi clickclick,

    Since you were clearly there in Istanbul, I have to guess which team you were in. Any clues?



    I didn’t see any presentation about Tromso 2014, but I can sure it will be great. On the other hand, I assured everyone Istanbul 2012 would be great because Istanbul 2000 was great fun. I did hear one Tromso 2014 rumour – some teams will stay on ships instead of hotels. Though that sounds like the sort of nonsense some chess player would make up.

  6. @Jacob Aagaard
    I know about the 3 fold move repetition rule, but I do not know about the requirement before move 30 as mentioned by Jacob above. I tried to look up on Internet regarding before move 30. I have not come across this before. I know about the 50 move rule if no piece is captured or pawn moved in 50 moves. Could someone please explain regarding the requirement before move 30 for 3 fold move repetition and does it apply to all tournaments?

  7. @Ed
    In some events, to avoid “GM draws”, basically draws by agreement and laziness, it is not allowed to make agree a draw before more 30. Three fold repetition overrules this, but at the Olympiad the arbiters are always rubbish and mostly insisted that we repeat 4-6 times, to make it past move 30. Actually, the arbiters did not make life easy for the players. Gibraltar has the same rule as far as I know, and much better arbiters.

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