index 2002
Letter #16 -  2002

Sub:    World title, rating & blindfold
Date:   5/27/2002 6:02:19 PM  MST
From:  Carlos Bonilla

Dear friends,

I have three questions and I would like to clear this up since I was asked these and I did not know the answer, so I'd like to hear an answer from you.

1.-  How the next candidate to the world title is selected? I mean, who wins that right, how is done and who decides it? I thought that the actual world champion was Gary Kasparov, isn't he?

A few days ago I read in the newspaper that the Hindu Anand (don't remember his last name) beat him. Is it true that he lost the championship? He still has the highest ELO rating in history.

2.- How a Chess player's ELO is calculated, what are the procedures?

3.- What is blindfold Chess?

It's hard to believe, as an example, like Miguel Najdorf could play more than 150 games at a time and when he moved to the next table of an x player, how did he recall his last move?

To me, that's impossible or, does somebody help him, can you tell me?

Thank you, I am loyal to your site, it's very good, congratulations.

Carlos Bonilla

Dear viewer,

For a player to earn the privilege to challenge the world Chess champion, he must compete in an eliminating contest. The Candidates matches organized by FIDE, are the final eliminating stage of the competition to decide the world champions opponent for the title match.

The entrants comprise the loser in the previous candidates match and six players who are chosen in the interzonal tournaments. Even though Gary Kasparov is considered the best Chess player in the world and having the highest rating ever, he is no longer world champion.

In 1993, he splits with FIDE to form PCA and he was stripped of the FIDE title. Look at our world champions page for more information about the current FIDE world champion.

With regard to the ELO rating, there are several rating and ranking systems in the Chess world and the most commonly used is the one developed by Professor Arpad Elo.

Being a little bit complicated to explain and in a few words, it is based on the rating of the player and rating of the opponents, and that the rating is adjusted based on how the player's actual result compares with the expected result.

A "k-factor" is a constant used to make the adjustment. If, on the basis of the ratings, a player is expected to score 5 points out of 10, but only scores 3, then the player would lose 2 times the k-factor, which can be anywhere from 10 to 25 points depending in the system used.

If the player scored 7, then the player would gain 2 times the k-factor. Now, if the player scores 5 points, no change would take place. Blindfold games is something that amaze us greatly. Those are games in which a Chess player won't see the Chess board at all and he assumedly retains everything in his mind.

As an example, the great Paul Morphy used to play blindfold games and well into the move 20 or so of a game, he announced: "Mate in 4 moves", hard to believe but is true, and it is written in Chess books.

Thank you for visiting us,

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