OTHERS

Hernandez and the new time control

MERIDA (MEXICO), MAY 20. Mexican Grandmaster Gilberto Hernandez blew hot and cold on the new FIDE time control, saying that it was ``too drastic'' as well as a ``positive change.''

The change, recommended by FIDE in its December 2000 meeting at Teheran, has since put the chess players on the attacking mode as the 31-year-old Hernandez expressed views for both sides at a press conference on Saturday morning.

``Already in the seven-hour session I am in time trouble, this means I will only be worse in the new four-hour session,'' observed Hernandez, one of the four players in the second Torneo Magistral of Chess tourney.

About the new time control being useful, he pointed out that it should be easier for FIDE or anyone else to market a four-hour game than a seven-hour drama with television in mind. He said further testing and study is needed in changing the time control, and added that a shift was needed if one aspired to be competitive with other sports from the sponsors' angle. Hernandez mentioned that FIDE is shying away from the zonals due to lack of enough prizemoney.

Hernandez further explained that his repertoire was not as wide as the guys with whom he is competing here, and that the situation was more difficult for him than last year. He confessed that he had been preparing for a month, gathering information about his opponents and tested some of the ideas

in the rapid chess tournament recently while taking the third place behind Anand.

Asked if he agreed with Alexander Khalifman that too many players are chasing too less money in the game that is slowly losing momentum in Europe, Hernandez said places like China, India and United Arab Emirates were all conducting tournaments that players in Europe should explore and take part. Just as the Russians come to Europe, the Europeans should also move to other places to compete.