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Slow Play Penalties

I know of at least two boards that were not played during the 2012 Spingold. Were all the matches watched and were boards taken away from all matches that were late? If you're going to take away boards, you'd better be sure that you're doing it correctly and in all matches.

If you take away Boards, you put players in a position where they can cause the opponents to play slowly. You're in 6NT with 12 top tricks and very little hope for a 13th. If you play it out, the opponents might think you only have 11 tricks and therefore defend slowly. If you're playing on a team with a weak sponsor, the fewer boards he has to play the better.  You never want conditions of contest written which could allow maybe 1 out of 100 players to take advantage of them.

If you want to penalize players for being slow, record the match on video or have monitors write down how much time was taken on each play. You can have a committee of experts decide who if anyone is guilty of playing slowly. I bet there are some 16 boards where it would not be out of line to exceed the time limit. Other 16 boards the slow player or players could be penalized.  

 

During the Roth Swiss teams, there were time limits for each match but I don't think any team was penalized for exceeding the time limit? I turned in a late ticket but was not penalized or even warned. In previous Swiss team games teams were penalized. This brings up the following problem. One team gets penalized and another team doesn't.

There was also a slow play penalty during the Women's team trial which decided who qualified to play in the semi-finals. I wonder if all matches were timed and all late matches penalized.

The problem is that these are random penalties. This puts Directors in a position where they can decide who to penalize. They could be busy doing something and not notice that a match was late. Not that any Director would but they could penalize a player that they don't like and look the other way when someone they like is late.

If you're going to penalize you better make sure that you 100% know what you are doing and 100% are consistent.

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