Urgent: FIDE On-line Chess Olympiad: Selection of Welsh Team and Captain

Deadline for Responses – End Tuesday 7 July


  1. The World Chess Federation (‘FIDE’) are organising an on-line Chess Olympiad at very short notice. The full details can be found here.  It is open to one team per member country. Entries need to reach FIDE by 13 July and include a list of players and reserves. A team captain also has to be nominated.  We therefore need to identify very quickly those who wish to participate (if selected).

Action needed

  1. If you wish to take part in this event and are definitely available, please e-mail Peter Bevan (internationaldirector@welshchessunion.uk ) and Howard Williams (chairmanselectors@welshchessunion.org.uk by the end of next Tuesday 7 July specifying in what capacity (see below).

Format of Event

  1. The event consists of matches between teams of six, two places open to anybody, two places for women, one player (either sex), and one girl born on or after 1 Jan 2000. Each country is entitled also to nominate one reserve for each of the six ‘main’ players.
  2. Games are played on-line at a rate of 15 minutes plus 5 second increments from move 1, i.e. slightly slower than blitz but faster than rapid. There will be three rounds a day (with rest days probably in between each playing day). The timing of the three rounds will take into account the time-zones in which countries are situated. It is envisaged that games will be played from home though there is no bar on players gathering together at one venue if a country’s lockdown rules as they then stand permit.
  3. Initially teams will participate in seeded all-play-all ten-team groups. This seeding works generally by allocating teams to divisions of 50 and then splitting the fifty into equal strength groups of ten. The top three teams in each group go on to the next stage; the other seven are eliminated.
  4. Only the ten-team APA tournaments in a particular division will take place simultaneously. All the matches for the bottom division will be completed before the next-to-bottom division’s tournaments start and so on. This enables the top three teams in a lower division tournament (15 teams in all from the division) to be promoted into the next division’s APAs. On the completion of the Division 2 tournaments the event moves on to the play-off stage essentially a series of knock-out matches and eventually a winner emerges.
  5. The timetable for the event is set out in full in paragraph 3.7 of the FIDE description.

Likely Seeding of Welsh Team

  1. Seedings are determined by the position of teams in the 2018 Olympiad in Batumi and have no link to the ratings of those selected for this event. For this purpose the results of the Open and Women’s teams are combined. This combining of results has already been used for the purposes of the ‘Gaprindashvili Cup’ and there is a link to the resultant order of the teams (on the chess results website) in the FIDE description. Wales finished 87th in 2018 under this process.
  2. The exception to this is that Division 1, initially of 25 teams, will include 5 teams nominated by each of FIDE’s four continents. Nearly all of these teams will doubtless have finished above Wales in the Gaprindashvili Cup.  Division 2, 3 and 4 will each consist successively of the 35 next highest seeded teams. Thus Division 3 will initially consist of teams seeded 61-95. It appears therefore that our placing in 87th position will get us into Division 3.

Period over which participants must be free

  1. As a result it appears that we will play our nine games in the period from August 5 to August 9. And if, contrary to the seeding expectation, we finish in the top three in our group, we would then play a further nine games in the period August 12 to 16 in Division 2.

 Requirements for selection as a player

  1. Players must be registered as Welsh by FIDE and meet the WCU’s domestic eligibility rules for international competitions under the auspices of FIDE.
  2. Access to a computer, lap-top etc and a reliable internet connection is obviously necessary.
  3. Players must be familiar with the rules for this competition (see para 3.1 of the FIDE document)
  4. Players must agree to abide by FIDE’s fair play rules (see para 6.6. of the FIDE document).
  5. As some rounds are almost bound to fall in the working day players must be free to participate throughout Wales’s playing days, in particular on whatever three will be chosen between Aug 5 and Aug 9.
  6. Experience of playing chess on-line is highly desirable.

Team Captain Duties and Requirements

  1. The captain chooses the team from the main players and the reserves (at the beginning of a playing day for each of the three rounds that day).
  2. The captain must participate in the technical meeting (via Zoom) held the day before the start of Wales’ division’s games.
  3. See also rules 12-16 above.


  1. Those stating their wish to take part in this event (see para 2 above) will be considered for selection next week and will obtain a response by Sunday July 12.

 Howard Williams
 Chairman of Seletors