View Full Version : Savic's "Commentary on the Laws of Chess"

Kevin Bonham
25-11-2005, 12:56 AM
Anyone else here come across this little book by Yugoslavian IA Mihajlo Savic? It basically consists of a list of the laws interspersed with comments and examples by the author, plus title norm info and so on in the back. Hobart International player Milutin Ivkovic imported some copies at a very cheap price. The English translation is published in 2003 so is now slightly out-of-date but some of the examples are still interesting. The translation isn't very good but the meaning generally seems clear enough.

I didnt always agree with the author's assessments - eg in discussing 10.2 he advises players who are confident a position they have been told to play on in should be ruled drawn, to just sit and allow flagfall. This is dangerous because some arbiters will award losses in this situation irrespective of the position.

One case I found amusing is of a player who meant to castle and put their king on f1 and rook on e1 instead of the intended g1 and f1. The arbiter (not Savic) ruled the player must play Kf1.

Savic's bio is interesting. He's a lawyer and one of his clients has been Karpov. Also he quit chess on starting university, returned to the game in his mid-forties and became an FM at age 54!

25-11-2005, 07:46 PM
I've never heard of it before Kevin, but it's an interesting concept. Maybe the FIDE rules should have a list of examples or precedents for the interpretation of a particular rule.

The only drawbacks I would see is that this may discourage arbiters from using their own judgement in certain situations, also, clever players may attempt to bring about analogous situations to the examples, where their opponent is unaware of the suggested interpretation.