About 30 players turned up, a poor mix of local players and a few rated players from Mumbai, who were paid appearance money for the event! These select players from Mumbai were also made to lose their games to "help the local talent".
It is ‘fixing’ with a difference! A visit to the venue of the A.P International FIDE-rated chess tournament (below ELO 2200) would have left any chess lover stunned at the way the event was organised in the by-lanes of BK Guda.
The organisers had informed FIDE (world governing body for chess) that they were hosting the event with a possible 200 entries, including many FIDE-rated players. Reality, however, was something totally in contrast.
About 30 players turned up, a poor mix of local players and a few rated players from Mumbai, who were paid appearance money for the event! These select players from Mumbai were also made to lose their games to “help the local talent”.
A visit to the venue exposed the fact that it was meant to increase the rating of a few select players by the coaches. That the results of the three-day event were not posted on the chessresults.com (though not mandatory but all FIDE-rated event organisers follow in principle) and a majority of the players were not even informed about the address of the venue raised a few eyebrows.
Although the event was held under the aegis of the A.P Chess Association, rules went for a toss as the organisers did not have the mandatory Swiss manager (software for pairings) which is a must.
The venue was a junior college with four tables in two classrooms.
“I wrote to the APCA seeking clarifications and I am awaiting a reply,” says coach and former national player Lanka Srinivas. APCA officials refused to comment despite repeated queries.