Colombian "Anti-Aquarium"

Время публикации: 20.12.2011 22:17 | Последнее обновление: 20.12.2011 22:19

Sergey Tiviakov on the chess professionals' trials 

ChessBase published Sergey Tiviakov's report from the tournament that was held in Bogota, the organizers of which were criticized by the former European Champion:

"When you look at my photo reports sent from all over the world, you might think how nice it is to be a chess-player: You see the world, visit exotic countries and win tournaments. Unfortunately, sometimes it is neither nice nor easy, it is a hard work, and it is not uncommon to have to suffer through very difficult playing conditions..

Unfortunately, my last tournament in Bogotá, Colombia, was one of the most deplorable experiences I have ever played in, and my trip there was almost non-stop suffering, despite the lovely city.

The tournament 'II JAHV MC GREGOR ITT" in Bogotá was held there for the second time in a row. I also played in this tournament in 2010 and tied for first place, winning the tournament on tie-break due to the higher progressive score.

This year the organizer, Mr. Orlando Ruiz, had promised improvements over the previous year. In 2010 there had been problems due to the incredibly long distance from the hotel to the playing hall, which consisted of a one hour drive by car to go, and another hour to return.

In 2011, instead of improvement the tournament conditions were worse all around, and even the prize fund was actually reduced, with the first prize going down from 3500 USD to approximately 2500 USD, with other prizes also going down accordingly.

Though this year the hotel was rather close to the playing hall – it is because the playing ‘hall’ was the newly opened CALIMA Shopping Center, which was an incredibly bad choice, as the playing conditions were truly unbearable...

To begin with, we were playing in the passage-ways of the shopping center, and not in a closed space. As a result, the noise level was incredibly high: all the rounds were played with very loud background music, constant noise from the people passing by, talking, mobile phones ringing, kids playing, and shopping center announcements.

It was also incredibly cold, and most players had to wear warm jackets, not to mention many even played with hats and gloves! This might surprise some, as Bogota is situated close to the equator, however due to its high attitude (2600 meters above the sea level) the temperature almost never goes above 17 C. to 20 C. and in the evening and nights the temperatures can drop as low as four degrees! Since the CALIMA Shopping Center doesn't have a permanent roof, the temperature inside is almost the same as outside, and it was really cold.

Although all the players complained to the organizer, he had no intention of doing anything to improve the playing conditions. He clearly gave us the impression that he couldn’t care less about the conditions in which we played. “Don't like it, quit the tournament” was his answer!

There actually was a possibility to have the top boards moved to a closed room, where we would be protected from the cold and the noise, but the organizer refused!

So my advice for all players who are considering playing Bogotá next year: don't do it!

The playing conditions are terrible!! It is pure agony and you will never get any pleasure from playing chess there!


Tiviakov doubts whether it's rightful to use the tie-break criteria of the number of wins in Swiss system tournaments, due to which Lazaro Bruzon was announced the winner leaving behind Tiviakov and Macieja, who shared 1-3 places with 8.5/10.  

The author of the report says he protested against this kind of tie-break criteria before the tournament has started. It awarded Bruzon with an extra 1500 USD "(1000 USD which by all rights should have gone to me, and 500 USD from B. Macieja, who would have taken second with any equitable tiebreak system)" writes Tiviakov. 

He also stresses that Bruzon's loss to Zapata in 25 moves has partly helped him to become the winner as long as he then played against weak players and raised his number of wins. Tiviakov also uses the example of FM Contreras Henry (2240) from Colombia, who took 4th place despite a performance of only 2237. According to the author of the report, Contreras played only one player with "a normal rating", while the rest of his opponents were rated 1800-2000. So, his fourth place came as an "award" for losing his 1st game to a player rated 1812. Tiviakov finishes the report with the pictures from Bogota.  

We offer you the game Zapata - Bruzon along with some other duels we've chosen. 


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