Tuesday, May 29, 2012

What does Roshan's win over Li Tian tell us?

Ref: Here.

I suggest it tells us that it is not about the ratings. In Malaysia there are some guided by going for ratings in tournaments. This is probably because the selection criteria still favours those with higher ratings. But those that go that route are not fighters.

We know that the Juniors improve in spurts, many are hampered from a solid run by exams and other commitments. So each year we see one pipping another. That is normal. That doesn't mean one is better than the other. Not yet.

We know that our IM's are not that strong from the last SEA games selection, from Kelantan Close, from Brunei and from a recent tournament where an IM won the best blogger prize.

Our IM's are weak because of a lack of competition. They rely on ratings gotten from history. And our Juniors are pushing against that glass ceiling. There are even other players coming up the ranks like Zaidan and now Ken Yew.

We also know that a problem with our Juniors is consistency. I suggest that this is because of 2 problems. One is mental toughness and the second is weaponry. If Li Tian had been playing white the results may have been different.

But make no mistake, the juniors are very close to taking over the mantle. As I have argued before, their experience in Asean, Youth and World tournaments have given them the methodology to win. But they don't have the luxury of uninterrupted runs because of studies.

But after 20, we pull the rug; after substantial investments have been poured into them. When they have more time to improve and pose a serious challenge we set the glass ceiling. The ideal selection for the Olympiads is one where all who want to go should compete for the place. This is good for all. The competition keeps both the IM's and the aspirants sharp.

Now what we are seeing is MCF trying to repair that shattered glass ceiling again for reasons best known to them. And for that same reason they are failing the chess community and failing the Nation.

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