Illness clause can't be misused: FIDE vice-president Israel Gelfer
Susan Ninan, TNN | Aug 24, 2013, 12.59 AM IST
CHENNAI: FIDE looked to play down the controversy surrounding the illness clause, which was incorporated in the players' contract for the World Chess Championship following the insistence of Magnus Carlsen.
FIDE vice-president Israel Gelfer, who was in the city to inspect the venue for the match, said: "It was a request made by Carlsen, which Anand graciously accepted. In the past there used to be a time-out, but it's not used anymore. It will not be just to call it a tactical move by a player and it cannot be misused."
Aruna, V Anand's wife and manager told the TOI on Thursday that FIDE had to answer why the illness clause was incorporated. If both the players invoke the clause, the match might go on for a few extra days, but Gelfer said that it's not a cause for worry. "It's OK, we have factored those things in," he said.
This is Gelfer's third visit to the city this year. Speaking of his recce trip along with FIDE CEO Geoffrey Borg, he added: "We had a complete inspection of the venue and detailed discussions about the logistics and organisational aspects. This is by far one of the best venues and we are extremely happy with the facilities here."
The opening ceremony is likely to be inaugurated by chief minister J Jayalalithaa on November 7, who will also conduct the draw of colours and the first of the 12-game series will be played on November 9. Apart from cultural programmes organised by the local authorities, the opening ceremony is also likely to feature a performance by a Norwegian troupe, for which talks are on with the Scandinavian country's embassy in New Delhi.
"I'm told that the only grouse Carlsen has had about his trip to the city is losing four simul-matches against children here," Gelfer said on a lighter vein.
The presidential board meeting of FIDE will also take place simultaneously with the Championship in the city. Kirsan Ilyumzhinov, president of the world body, will be present along with a host of top-level members of the organisation for the November 8-9 meeting. Ilyumzhinov will also be a part of the prize distribution ceremony on November 28.
For the Championship, the dimly-lit spectators' bay will have a seating capacity of 350-400 and an entry fee will be charged, the rates of which are yet to be decided. A provision to allow limited number of students to watch the match free of cost is also being mulled over. Speaking of the low seating capacity for the event FIDE vice-president DV Sundar said: "Chess is a sport that most people would prefer to watch online along with the live commentary and analysis rather than at the venue."