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Thread: Illegal Move

  1. #1
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    Illegal Move

    A scenario

    A is playing B in a fifteen minutes on the clock game. A makes an illegal move putting his king in check. B takes the king claiming that it is lightning rules and claims a win. The DOP says no and reinstates the position before A made the illegal move. The DOP says for A to make a legal move and continue the game. Is the DOP correct in his decision?


    Standard rules of chess would apply

    Comments would be appreciated.

  2. #2
    Reader in Slood Dynamics Rincewind's Avatar
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    I would say the arbiter is correct in that Rapid and not Blitz rules apply for 15 minute games. However it would have been judicious to announce this at the start of the first round at least. However I believe the arbiter should have awarded B some extra time to compensate for the disruption of the original illegal move.
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  3. #3
    CC Grandmaster Capablanca-Fan's Avatar
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    The Arbiter didn't know FIDE laws for either Rapid or Blitz.

    The time control is clearly Rapidplay as RW says:

    A ‘Rapidplay’ game is one where either all the moves must be made in a fixed time of at least 15 minutes but less than 60 minutes for each player; or the time allotted + 60 times any increment is at least 15 minutes, but less than 60 minutes for each player.

    There is no automatic loss for an illegal move. Instead, the normal laws apply:

    7.4b for the first two illegal moves by a player the arbiter shall give two minutes extra time to his opponent in each instance; for a third illegal move by the same player, the arbiter shall declare the game lost by this player. However, the game is drawn if the position is such that the opponent cannot checkmate the player’s king by any possible series of legal moves.

    So there is no doubt that the arbiter should have awarded time compensation as RW states.

    In Blitz, B did not claim a win (or draw) as the laws specify:

    An illegal move is completed once the opponent’s clock has been started. The opponent is entitled to claim a win before he has made his own move. However, if the opponent cannot checkmate the player’s king by any possible series of legal moves, then the claimant is entitled to claim a draw before he has made his own move. Once the opponent has made his own move, an illegal move cannot be corrected unless mutually agreed without intervention of an arbiter.

    So B should have claimed a win orally. Capturing the king is not allowed as a way to claim a win. Rather, it is itself an illegal move under 1.2:

    ’capturing’ the opponent’s king are not allowed.

    So if A had claimed an illegal move in response, and since B did not claim an illegal move validly, then A would have been compensated, not B.
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  4. #4
    Monster of the deep Kevin Bonham's Avatar
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    It is important to always make sure the player making the illegal move has pressed their clock. If they have not then they still have the liberty to retract it without penalty (but subject to touchmove if possible).

    If A has pressed his clock then

    (i) B's claim for an illegal move is correct (although B is not entitled to claim a win) and the position should be wound back to before the illegal move, and B given two minutes
    (ii) I note Jono's comments above about the illegal king capture, but if B has verbally claimed that an illegal move has occurred then B's illegal move claim is still in my view valid even if accompanied by the illegal king capture. (Most likely upon making the illegal king capture, B has not pressed the clock.)

    I would award B two minutes but I would also warn B that king capture is not a valid method of claiming a win at any time control.

    Note that from 1 July 2014 this will all change and an illegal move in Rapid (completed by a clock press) will become a loss; furthermore the arbiter will be required to call a loss as soon as they see a player make an illegal move and press their clock, without needing to wait for the opponent to claim.
    Last edited by Kevin Bonham; 02-12-2013 at 11:18 AM.

  5. #5
    Illuminati Bill Gletsos's Avatar
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    I'm going to throw a spanner in the works and ask if the name of the event had the word "Allegro" in the title.

    The reason that could be important is that in Australia virtually all allegro tournaments in the 70's & 80's were run at the time control of 15 minutes per player and lightning rules applied.

    So if player B was of that vintage then perhaps that is why he could have thought lightning rules applied.
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  6. #6
    CC Grandmaster antichrist's Avatar
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    there is one old player here who still lives in that timeframe and attempts to practise that all games are of those rules - and so fights galore and he being an organiser at that time people just did not come back
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  7. #7
    CC FIDE Master Jesper Norgaard's Avatar
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    Also note the change of time upper limit for Blitz games:

    Before it was x < 15min
    In July 2014 it will be x <= 10min

    So before 15.00 on the clock was the lowest time limit which was a Rapid game.
    In July 2014 10.01 is a Rapid game, while 10.00 on the clock is a Blitz game. This way of defining the limit between Blitz and Rapid makes more sense to me, in other words using "<=" instead of "<".

    For the fans of increment, 7min+3sec would be a Blitz game, while 9min+2sec would not because it means in 60 moves, 11 minutes would have been provided to each player.
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  8. #8
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    I've just been watching the Victorian Lightning Championship and an interesting problem arose with the rules for blitz chess. A player made a move but did not press his clock. His opponent made a move in reply and this was ruled to be an "illegal move" and he was consequently forfeited. A quick look at the Rules of Chess and the Wiki entry for Blitz Rules suggests that this may be an incorrect interpretation.

    Can any Chess Chatters enlighten me as to the correct ruling in this situation?
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  9. #9
    Illuminati Bill Gletsos's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jammo View Post
    I've just been watching the Victorian Lightning Championship and an interesting problem arose with the rules for blitz chess. A player made a move but did not press his clock. His opponent made a move in reply and this was ruled to be an "illegal move" and he was consequently forfeited. A quick look at the Rules of Chess and the Wiki entry for Blitz Rules suggests that this may be an incorrect interpretation.

    Can any Chess Chatters enlighten me as to the correct ruling in this situation?
    Oh dear.
    The illegal move ruling is rubbish.

    As per Article 1.1 of the Laws of Chess:
    Quote Originally Posted by Article 1.1
    The game of chess is played between two opponents who move their pieces on a square board called a ‘chessboard’. The player with the light-coloured pieces (White) makes the first move, then the players move alternately, with the player with the dark-coloured pieces (Black) making the next move. A player is said to ‘have the move’ when his opponent’s move has been ‘made’.
    This has nothing to do with completing the move by pressing the clock.

    As per the "Glossary of terms in the Laws of Chess"
    made: 1.1. A move is said to have been ‘made’ when the piece has been moved to its new square, the hand has quit the piece, and the captured piece, if any, has been removed from the board.
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  10. #10
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    James Morris was forfeited on move 10 due to this rule against Anton Smirnov

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    Quote Originally Posted by jammo View Post
    I've just been watching the Victorian Lightning Championship and an interesting problem arose with the rules for blitz chess. A player made a move but did not press his clock. His opponent made a move in reply and this was ruled to be an "illegal move" and he was consequently forfeited. A quick look at the Rules of Chess and the Wiki entry for Blitz Rules suggests that this may be an incorrect interpretation.

    Can any Chess Chatters enlighten me as to the correct ruling in this situation?
    On what basis was the second player's move ruled to be illegal?

    My guess is that one or more of the following points may be relevant to this particular situation:

    1) Once Player A has released the piece on its intended square, they are considered to have `made' their move. Player B is entitled to respond immediately, even if Player A has not yet `completed' their move by pressing the clock. This has been discussed in other threads here.
    2) If the arbiter spots an initial illegal move completed by Player A, he should immediately rule a win for Player B. (This is provided that it is possible for Player B to checkmate Player A by some sequence of legal moves, from the last known legal position prior to the illegal move.)
    3) If Player A completes an illegal move, and this goes unnoticed by Player B and the arbiters, then Player B is perfectly entitled to make and complete a legal move in reply. If Player B's move meets the requirements of Article 3, then they have done nothing wrong. There is no basis to forfeit them.


    It sounds like a ridiculous decision.
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  12. #12
    Illuminati Bill Gletsos's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ThebeJohnston View Post
    James Morris was forfeited on move 10 due to this rule against Anton Smirnov
    Did any of the three arbiters argue that the decision is simply wrong, or did all three support it.
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  13. #13
    Illuminati Bill Gletsos's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Andrew Hardegen View Post
    It sounds like a ridiculous decision.
    Totally.
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  14. #14
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    All three supported it, infact when a player tried to make a formal complaint, Sandler and Kenmure were apart of the commitee

  15. #15
    Illuminati Bill Gletsos's Avatar
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    I've previously explained this over here.

    The following sequence is perfectly legal in classical, rapid and blitz.
    Player A releases the piece. Player A has not yet pressed his clock.
    Now at the point that player A released his piece, it is entirely legal for Player B to touch one of his own pieces and start to move it.
    Player B can in fact release his own piece prior to Player A still having touched the clock.
    Now the critical point is even if Player B press's his clock prior to Player A having yet pressed his clock, Player A is entitled under Article 6.8 to always be allowed to press his clock. Therefore if Player B presses his clock before Player A has, Player A can still stop his own clock and start player B's and Player B would then have to restart Player A's.
    Note it is entirely illegal for Player B to not allow Player A to press his clock in the above sequence.

    This whole thing comes down to FIDE's use of the words "completed", "move has been made", touched a piece", etc in various areas of the rules.

    Thus the sequence of a move is:
    1) A player touches a piece. Lets keep this simple and assume he touches one of his own pieces. A piece is considered touched when a player deliberately touches a piece with the intention of moving it.
    2) The player then moves his piece to a square and releases the piece. The move is now considered to "have been made". Unless the move is illegal, the player can no longer retract or change his move.
    3) If the move in 2) immediately ended the game as described under any section of Articles 5.1 or 5.2 then stopping the clock is irrelevant.
    4) If the move did not end the game then the move is then considered to be complete when the player stops his clock. Note in Rapid (as per July 2014) & Blitz it is not until this has occurred that a player can claim a win via illegal move.

    Now the issue of when an opponent is able to reply to a players move is covered by the last sentence of Article 1.1 which states: "A player is said to 'have the move', when his opponent's move has been made.

    Note the FIDE Rules Commission deliberately changed Article 1.1 in the 2001 Laws to say "has been made". In the preceding rules (FIDE 1997) the wording was "has been completed".
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