This blog is about a wide range of topics, their common denominator being simply that I'm interested in them. My aim is to relieve my friends of my constant lecturing about such things as e.g. Chess, Football, Languages or Scandinavian Music ...

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Monday, March 22, 2010


The dust has settled and I'm looking back at an incredible weekend that can be summarised best by the title of this post: Madness (note the capital "M", it is well deserved!).

My Friday began rather unspectacularly, as I was working a full eight hours in relative silence while many of the full-time colleagues called it a day early. Things took up pace after I had logged out at half past six. I picked up my notebook and headed for my chess club, where I wanted to meet some of my team mates for an analysis session.

About tournament conditions

Upon arrival I realised that our second team was engaged in their cup quarter-final against a club from the stockbroker belt of Frankfurt. Now we usually don't have a second room at our disposal, since as a Frankfurt-based club we generally have to pay rent for the room and consequently have to watch our spendings.

Well, "we're gonna whisper and she'll be right" is what I came up with as a plan for the evening. The plan was spoiled immediately by my notebook when the Windows welcome tune sounded through the room before I could operate the mute button. After this everything went smoothly except once, when somebody asked us to keep it down a bit.

As time trouble commenced, I shut down the notebook because I wanted to watch the games. The match had closed in on its climax. Even after the time controls were reached time trouble didn't end because cup matches are played with a fast time control of two hours for 40 moves and then 15 minutes for the remainder. It was 2-0 for us and board one should have been drawn but you never know... On top of that the opponent player at board 2 was winning, but, in spite of having 20 minutes against our player's two, he didn't realise that he had an elementary win. We feared we needed the draw here, because in case of a 2-2 the opponents would have gone through on tiebreaker.

Thus I was watching how the opponent bottled it and then attempted to win on time an endgame of rook pawn and wrong bishop against the bare king. This player declined a draw offer by simply pointing at our player's clock which heated up the atmosphere quite a little. Instead of claiming draw according to FIDE rules article 10.2 our player offered a draw again after having reached the corner and received a similar reply. The opponent complemented his effort by simply not maintaining his score sheet anymore in order to squeeze out valuable seconds...

While the drama unfolded one of the opponents had a go at me, claiming that he had lost his game because of the noise level. I asked him why he's complaining only now, after the game, and whether he had ever played in an open. He guaranteed me that he had and that what we had provided was nowhere close to tournament conditions. I'll leave this episode uncommented.

Anyway, after the game on board 1 ended drawn, the remaining game was also agreed drawn in time and the feared fracas didn't materialise. In the end we could have lost the match because of the ineptness of our player, as it should well be known by now that article 10.2 requires a player to formally register the claim to the arbiter instead of simply uttering the word "draw" over and over again.

Eintracht Frankfurt's Magic Moment

Saturday afternoon Lather and I went to a local pub to watch the Bundesliga match between Eintracht Frankfurt and Bayern München. Our hearts wished that Frankfurt would be able to hold their own, but, as most of our regular starters were either injured or suspended, reason let us fear a heavy defeat against the German powerhouse.

Six minutes into the match reason appeared to prevail as Miro Klose scored in spite of Arjen Robben being clearly offside and not really far away enough for this situation to be ruled passive offside. At least this dubious referee call had one advantage. It set up one of the Eintracht ultras, who was already half through his first bottle of liquor, to go ballistic at absolutely everything that happened on the screen, be it a referee call, sloppy passing or fouls committed by Bayern players. His constant cursing in extremely coarse language that he delivered at the very top of his voice was very amusing and a consolation to us as we were assured that, if not beaten Bayern at least got thoroughly insulted.

As we realised that Frankfurt was playing their match of the season, creating chance after chance against the supposed über-team, the atmosphere approached the boiling point. The only thing that was missing was a Frankfurt goal.

When Frankfurt eventually levelled the score in the 87th minute, the whole audience went postal and I certainly don't need to explain what happened after Frankfurt scored the winner in the 89th minute. I guess the last time I saw people go off like that was in 1999 when I was out at the Waldstadion and became witness to the amazing 5-1 win over Kaiserslautern that prevented Frankfurt's relegation. Watching the World Cup 2006 quarter-final between Germany and Argentina amongst 80000 people comes in as a close runner-up.

I'll call it a day for now because this piece has become quite long already. There were other things that would have been equally worthy of mentioning. Well, your imagination should be able to supply clues as to the course of the evening after such an amazing football experience.

Hint: Don't even think of the word "sobriety" (-:

1 comment:

  1. Maybe it was the forthcoming spirit of ManU that helped Frankfurt a little bit to turn the game as the English did some time ago...