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No takers for Humpy’s explanation

In a valiant bid to justify the decision to withdraw from the ongoing Commonwealth Chess Championship, K. Humpy has pointed to the “announcement” made by the chief arbiter K. Srivatsan as the main reason behind her action.

Humpy, who was declared “lost on time” against Himanshu Sharma in the fourth round on Thursday and left after the Appeals’ Committee upheld the result of her game, listed out several reasons for her act in an email to The Hindu .

She wrote, “The whole incident happened because the arbiter announced the time control in wrong manner (improper communication) before the start of Round-1.”

Srivatasan, with 20 years of experience, smiled at Humpy’s accusation and said, “First, I announced the number of rounds to be played as 9, next was the time control of 90 minutes plus 30-second increment for each move made and third I said the grace time was 30 minutes.

“In chess events world over, grace time refers to cut off after which a player is entitled to receive a walkover. I was only following an international practice. In any case, a player has the right to approach me or any of the arbiters for clarification.”

Humpy referred to the defeat of WGM Tania Sachdev, who was declared “lost on time” in the first round, and said, “When such incidents occur, it is the moral responsibility of the arbiter and the organising committee to inform players to ensure that these things don’t recur.”

Responding to this charge, the Commonwealth Chess Association’s chairman Bharat Singh Chauhan said, “When the time-control was clearly mentioned on the tournament website since March, displayed along with the daily pairings outside the tournament hall and also on the “” server where players normally check their pairings, is there any room for ambiguity?”

In its ruling, the Appeals’ Committee noted that “players should be aware of the rules and regulations of the event. There was no transgression of FIDE rules and the official tournament rules.”

Even as the chess world expressed surprise over Humpy’s ignorance of the time-control, Humpy pointed to her signing the scoresheet and handing the point to her opponent was “right” and according to rules.

“She signed the scoresheet only after I insisted,” clarified the deputy chief arbiter Gopakumar who reminded her of the time-control of the championship and continued, “At this point, she said, “I am withdrawing from the championship.”

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Printable version | May 16, 2022 10:31:05 am |