Tuesday, December 01, 2009

The Hand is Quicker than the Eye

See if you can make sense of this now-famous video of the Armageddon match (don't you love that term?) that decided the 2008 U.S. Women's Chess Championship. Double or triple-click on the screen to see the clip on YouTube full screen. Try to figure out who actually won and who moved out of turn. I certainly can't.

Thanks in no small part to this clip, chances are a national championship will never be decided in this way again. From Chicago's own Betsy Dynako.


Liquid Egg Product said...

Deciding a tournament with such quick games never sat well with me. The first 2 (15/30) seem OK, but 5/3? That's not even close to real chess.

This runs counter to how I don't mind the overtime arrangement for professional football (American), where one team may not even get possession of the ball. Sudden death changes the strategy, and some people complain it's not fair. But I believe if a team wants to prove it's superior, it should to win in regulation.

So maybe the same thing here. If someone can't win the match in normal play and after four tiebreakers, he/she didn't prove his/her superiority.

Tom Panelas said...


If I catch your drift you'd be comfortable with co-champions, then, if no clear winner emerges from the regular competition, correct?

Me too. Better that, it seems to me, than breaking the tie in way that's essentially meaningless. Why not reead the entrails of a butchered animal while you're at it?