Handbook ::  D. Regulations for Specific Competitions

D.IV.02. FIDE World Cities Championship

Regulations for the FIDE World Cities Championship

1. General

1.1 The FIDE World Cities Championship shall be held at two-yearly intervals among teams representing cities with a maximum of one city per country. National federations are eligible to play with their national team members representing a city.
1.2 The FIDE World Cities Championship is a sequel to the Chess Olympiad and Continental Cities Championships.

1.3 Organizer

The Al Ain Chess Club of the UAE Chess Federation commits to organize the World Cities Championship for the Sheikh Zayed Cup for five times until 2020.
After 2020, the Organizer will be appointed through a special selection process which should be held at least two years in advance. He will be responsible to FIDE, and must abide by these regulations. The Organizer shall make available all the necessary premises, staff and funds for the event. The minimum requirements are laid down in individual sections of these regulations. The Organizer may utilize the services of outside bodies or private persons for the purpose of financing and running the event. The tasks and responsibilities of the Organizer are detailed in subsequent sections of these regulations.

1.4 Participants

1.4.1 Teams
There shall be 32 teams representing 32 countries in the FIDE World Cities Championship according to the following criteria:

  1. 1 World Cities Champion (for 2012 this is Olympiad Champion).
  2. 1 World Team Champion
  3. 4 Continental Cities Champions. The qualifiers will be the winners of the immediately previous, respective Continental Cities Championships.
  4. 25 cities champion teams per FIDE Zone. (Zones are encouraged to hold cities team championships.)

In the event that no cities team championship is held for that zone, then the place shall go to the country of the highest-placed team per FIDE Zone in the FIDE Olympiad prior to the event. If the country of the highest placed team per zone has already qualified as Continental team cities champion or other criteria, this place will be given to the next highest ranked country per zone in the Olympiad preceding the World Cities Championship or, for single federation zones, next ranked in that Olympiad.

  1. 1 team from the host federation/city.
  2. In case a team withdraws two weeks or less before the tournament, the organizers may nominate a replacement in consultation with FIDE.

1.4.2 Composition of teams
The teams are made up of 4 players plus 1 reserve and 1 captain.

    • Eligibility: The players must be entitled by birth, citizenship or naturalization to represent their Federation. Detailed eligibility rules are in Reg. C.05.
    • A player who has resided for at least three years in a country of which he or she is not a citizen after the date on which FIDE shall have received notification of change of Federation and who proves that he or she has applied for citizenship in that country or intends to do so as soon as the legal requirements are fulfilled may become a team member of a Federation after a thorough examination and clearance of the case by the FIDE President.
    • A player with dual citizenship may only represent one Federation and is eligible by citizenship to participate in the World Cities Championship on condition that he or she has not represented any other Federation in any FIDE team or individual competition at any time in the preceding year.

1.4.3 Each team shall have a captain, who may also be one of the players (or reserve).
Duties of team captain:

  • Leadership of the team matches
  • Liaison with the Chief Arbiter

1.4.4 The federations take full responsibility for the conduct of their players. Each federation may be represented by a Chief of delegation; it may either appoint a person exclusively to this office, or entrust the team captain, or one of the players or reserves, with this function. Federations shall ensure that team captains and Chiefs of Delegations possess copies of the Tournament regulations and the FIDE laws. All teams should abide by specific Security Procedures.

Duties of Chief of delegation:
Administrative supervision of the team
Liaison with the organizing authorities and Tournament Director.

1.5 Schedule of the FIDE World Cities Championship

9 days as follows:
Day 1 arrival, team captains’ meeting and opening ceremony
Day 2 RR1
Day 3 RR2
Day 4 RR3
Day 5 Round of 16
Day 6 Quarterfinals
Day 7 Semifinals
Day 8 Finals and closing ceremony
Day 9 departure

2. Appointment of the Organizer

2.1 A proposal to undertake the organization and running of a World Cities Championship may take the form of

  1. a bid procedure, or
  2. a direct and concrete offer.

2.1.1 A decision on the proposals will be made by the Presidential Board.

2.2 Bid Procedure

2.2.1 Bids are to be made on the form prescribed by the FIDE Handbook, and submitted to the General Secretary.
2.2.2 The Presidential Board shall decide on the order in which the Federations that made bids will be granted options (first, second, third option - etc.), and on the period of validity of these options.
2.2.3 The Federation which is granted the first option shall within 30 days pay FIDE the non-refundable deposit for the organization of a World Cities Championship of 5,000 Euros.
2.2.4 If the deposit is not paid on time, then the option is cancelled and an option is granted to the next Federation (in the order laid down by the Presidential Board.)
2.2.5 If paragraph 2.2.4 is enforced, FIDE will inform the Federation that has been accorded the next option. The procedure will then be continued as in paragraph 2.2.3.
2.3 Direct, concrete offers for the organization of the championship will be decided on directly by the Presidential Board.
2.3.1 The offers are to be made in writing.
2.3.2 Acceptance of an offer is conditional upon payment of the non-refundable deposit fee of 5,000 Euros to FIDE, within 30 days, by the Federation making the offer.
2.3.3 If the Federation later abandons the undertaking, the deposit is forfeited to FIDE.
2.3.4 After the holding of the World Cities Team Championship, the deposit will be repaid to the Federation by which the contest was organized.

3. Period of preparations for the World Cities Championship

3.1 By the end of the year in which the Olympiad preceding the FIDE World Cities Championship has been held, the FIDE General Secretary will give the organizing Federation the names of the Chess Federations which have qualified to participate in the championship in case no Zonal Cities Team Championships are held.

3.2 Organization and inspection

3.2.1 Not later than 12 months before the start of the tournament, the Federation entrusted with the organization must deliver to FIDE a draft of the invitation to the contest, which will contain full information on the following:

  1. venue;
  2. dates for the start and finish of the championship, and participating team application deadlines;
  3. arrangements for the participating teams;
  4. travel facilities, conditions for visas, etc.

3.2.2 At the same time as this is submitted, FIDE must be invited to inspect the venue, and to conduct a preliminary discussion at the Organizer`s expense.
3.2.3 FIDE will inform the Organizer, with (if appropriate) a note of any modification which it considers desirable on the basis of the inspection of the venue and the preliminary discussion. If necessary, further inspections are to be arranged.

3.3 Invitation to the Federations

Not later than 5 months before the start of the championship, the organizing Federation shall send the invitation in its final form to all Federations entitled to participate and publish it on the FIDE web site for possible replacements.

3.4 Notice of participation

3.4.1 Not later than 4 months before the start of the tournament, every Federation that intends to exercise its right of participation must inform the organizing Federation that it accepts the invitation. Copies of the letter of acceptance should at the same time be sent to FIDE.
3.4.2 At the same time, the Federation concerned must pay to FIDE through the Organizing Committee the entry fee per team of 270 Euros.

3.5 Submission of team lists

Not later than 3 months before the start of the tournament, every Federation that has entered must notify the following details to the Organizer:

  1. name and initials of the team captain;
  2. name and FIDE ID of each team member (one first name in full, initial of additional first names, surname);
  3. FIDE ratings of team members (according to the most recent FIDE rating list);
  4. any information required in connection with visas.

4. Organization of World Cities Championship
Commercial Rights

4.1 Income accruing from the FIDE World Cities Championship through admission charges, concessions, sale of equipment, etc., shall go to the Organizer.
4.2 The commercial and television rights, including video and film rights, and the internet rights belong to FIDE.

4.3 FIDE Principals

The FIDE principals nominated by the FIDE President are:

  • the Chief Arbiter,
  • Deputy Chief Arbiter (who shall be from the host Federation) and
  • the 3 members of the Appeals Committee (Chairman plus two members) one of whom may be the FIDE Technical Delegate nominated by the FIDE Events Commission.

The functions of these principals are laid down in the section ("Parties to the World Cities Championship").

  1. The stipends shall be 3,000 Euros for the Chief Arbiter and 2,000 Euros for the Deputy Chief Arbiter and each member of the Appeals Committee. The stipend for other Arbiters shall be regulated by the Organiser.
  2. Any of the principals who are active at the championship for only part of the time will only receive a pro rata portion of the stipend.
  3. The Organizer will be host to the principals for the entire duration of the contest.
  4. Payment of stipends. After the end of the tournament, the Organizer shall pay the sums specified in these regulations (as net amounts, after meeting any tax liability). At the option of the participants, the Organiser will pay them in person or arrange for transfer of the sums to their home countries or any other place they choose.

4.3.1 Provisions for the President and principals

4.3.1.1 Travel

  • The President is entitled to first class travel by air.
  • For all other principals, provision shall be made for return travel by air.
  • All travel arrangements will be made by the Organizer. Principals who wish to make their own arrangements will do so entirely at their own risk and must seek prior approval of the cost from the Organizer for subsequent refund.

4.3.1.2 Accommodation

  • For the President: a suite in the official hotel.
  • For each of the other principals: a double room with bath/WC.
  • All principals should be accommodated on a full board basis in the same hotel as the participants.

4.3.1.3 Transport in the tournament locality

  • For the President: a chauffeur-driven car.
  • For the other principals: a pool of cars shall be provided, the use of which will depend on the location of the hotels, tournament hall and media center. Where appropriate, journeys should be made jointly, by arrangement with the Organizer.

4.3.1.4 Medical care

  • Consultation by the tournament physician; any medical services he prescribes.
  • The Organizer will meet the cost of treating acute illnesses, but not chronic ailments.

4.4 Provision for the arbiters will be as arranged by the organizing committee.

4.4.1 Sufficient number of arbiters are to be available to control the separate team matches in the championship,
4.4.2 By arrangement with these arbiters (either directly or through their Federations), the Organizer shall provide for their travelling expenses, accommodation, meals and pocket money.

4.5 Provision for teams

4.5.1 Travelling expenses shall be met by the individual Federations.
4.5.2 All teams shall be provided for their hotel and meals for the duration of their competition, from day of arrival until one day after their round.

4.5.3 Furnishing of the playing hall
4.5.3.1 The Organizer is responsible for the furnishing and upkeep of the playing hall and its environs.
4.5.3.2 The FIDE flag and the national flags of the participating Federations are to be flown from the playing hall.
4.5.3.3 The hall is to be divided into a playing area and a spectator area.
4.5.3.4 Acoustics, decoration, ventilation, heating or air conditioning, and lighting must conform to the highest modern standards. The carpeting should eliminate distracting noise.
Tables, chairs, chess boards, pieces and clocks should be chosen according to FIDE specifications.
4.5.3.5 The spectator area must be clearly separated from the playing area, but spectators must have the opportunity to follow the matches directly.
4.5.3.6 The players must not, however, be disturbed by spectators.
The Chief Arbiter shall decide what constitutes a disturbance. If necessary, those causing it will be expelled from the hall.
4.5.3.7 The Organizer shall appoint staff with clearly visible insignia to supervise the hall.
4.5.3.8 Relaying of the games on video equipment or demonstration boards (with or without commentaries) may take place in the playing hall with the approval of the Chief Arbiter. The equipment, management and staffing of these rooms are the responsibility of the Organizer.

4.6 Media Facilities

4.6.1 The Organizer shall make every conceivable effort to attract the world`s finest reporters and equip them to convey the best possible presentation of these matches to all those who cannot witness them as spectators.
4.6.2 The Organizer shall ensure an efficient media service for writers, photographers, national and international news agencies, and the electronic media.
4.6.3 The Organizer shall appoint an information officer to supervise these activities, and shall set up a media center (press center).
4.6.4 The media center should be:

  • near the playing hall, with easy access to parking;
  • large enough to contain all necessary professional equipment, as well as relaxation and refreshment facilities for journalists;
  • under strict supervision to exclude anyone not in possession of a valid pass issued by the Organizer;
  • open for a period before the contest (as determined by the Organizer), and for one day after the end of the contest; and
  • manned by properly qualified personnel.

4.6.5 Facilities in the media center

  • Work rooms:
    Sufficient tables and chairs (if possible, not more than 2 people to a table); computers with various keyboards; paper, and other general stationery; printers.
  • Information area:
    Clearly marked notice boards for news and results service; a public address system to inform journalists of calls or messages.
  • The refreshment bar or restaurant, and lavatories, should be in the immediate vicinity.

4.7 Guidelines for co-operation with journalists

4.7.1 All persons wishing to operate in the media center must receive official credentials.
4.7.2 Every journalist (in the wide sense) shall be issued a pass. This must incorporate a firmly attached photograph, and must be worn prominently on all media premises.
4.7.3 The passes will give access to

  • the playing hall
  • the media center, and
  • the restaurant(s) for the players and press.

4.7.4 Accommodation for journalists
The Organizer shall assist journalists with hotel reservations. He shall recommend suitable accommodation at favourable prices, or endeavour to make it available. The journalists should preferably be accommodated in a single hotel or in adjacent hotels. Information supplied to journalists should include: addresses, telephone or email, location of hotels, and prices.
4.7.5 Press conferences
For these, special rooms should be made available.
Notice of all press conferences by the President or players, as well as any special announcements by the Organizer, should be conveyed to the journalists in good time. Similarly, all principals should be informed.
4.7.6 Conduct of interviews
General interviews with participants in the championship may be conducted by direct arrangements with those concerned. Participants are obliged to attend for a short interview after the game as requested by the organizer.
4.7.7 Conduct in the playing hall

  • On entering the playing hall, media personnel are treated as spectators.
  • They are subject to the regulations applying to spectators, except in so far as their work as media personnel necessarily requires exceptions.
  • The taking of photographs in the playing hall is restricted to officially recognized reporters with the Organizer`s express permission.
  • This permission will only be valid for the first 5 minutes after the start of any round.
  • Film or television cameras and recording instruments may be brought into the press lobby or spectator area, installed and operated, only by special permission of the Chief Arbiter.

5. Specific measures at the start of the championship or shortly before it

5.1 Notification of the precise schedule to the Federations

Not later than 6 weeks before the start of the championship, all participating Federations must possess the following information:
5.1.1 Date and time of:

  • the opening ceremony, the start of the first round, the end of the final round,
  • the closing ceremony.

5.1.2 Any extra arrangements, and provision for their cost (e.g. in case of missed airway connections etc.), must be agreed in advance with the Organizer.

5.2 Passes

The Organizer shall provide accreditation and passes for players, captains and organizers.

5.3 Care of players

The Organizer and his colleagues shall give every assistance in looking after the players, both immediately after their arrival and during the tournament itself. The Organizer shall make every effort to provide the players with the best possible quality of accommodation, food and drink, transport, and playing conditions.

5.4 Opening ceremony

5.4.1 All players, captains and principals must take part in this ceremony.
5.4.2 The program of events and the list of speakers are to be agreed between FIDE and the organizing committee.
5.4.3 The building or hall where the ceremony is held shall be decorated with the FIDE flag and the flag of the host country.
5.4.4 At the start of the ceremony, the national anthem of the host country and the FIDE anthem shall be played.

6. Parties to the World Cities Championship

6.1.1 The FIDE President represents the interest of FIDE and is empowered to take the final decision in all questions relating to the championship as a whole.
6.1.2 The FIDE Technical Delegate shall be responsible to ensure that the Organizing Committee adhere strictly to both the general conditions and the regulations of the World Cities Championship.

6.2 Behaviour

6.2.1 During the whole course of the contest, the players must conduct themselves in accordance with sporting fairness and decency, and must take care neither to distract nor to trouble their opponents. They should endeavour to settle all disputes by mutual accommodation.
6.2.2 Prior agreement between players or captains as to the result of games or of a match will be penalized with the utmost severity. If any such agreement is proved to have taken place, the points apportioned by it will be forfeited, and the matter will be referred to the appeals committee for the fixing of the penalty.

6.3 The team captains' duties

6.3.1 Before the start of a round, the captain of a team must deliver to the Chief Arbiter, or to a representative appointed by the latter for this purpose, a sealed envelope containing a list of the team members who are to take part in the round in question. If this list is not delivered by the appointed time, the team may only use the players numbered 1 - 4 in the board order.
6.3.2 In the exercise of his functions the team captain has the right of access to the area reserved for the players, but it is his duty to ensure that the members of his team who are not involved in the current match or have finished their games do not enter or remain in this area.
6.3.3 During the games the captain must refrain from interfering in any way. The exchange of communication between captain and players must take place in the presence of an arbiter.
6.3.4 The captain is permitted to appoint a deputy to exercise his functions, but must inform the Chief Arbiter of this in writing.
6.3.5 In matters relating directly to the play, the captain alone is entitled to lodge protests or present demands made by his players.

6.4 The appeals committee

6.4.1 The Chairman of the Appeals Committee shall be nominated by the FIDE President. There shall be two other members, all from different Federations, appointed by the FIDE President in consultation with the Organizing Committee. No member of the Appeals Committee shall sit in judgment in a dispute involving a player or party from his Federation except where the dispute is between two players or two parties from his Federation.
6.4.2 All protests must be submitted in writing to the Appeals Committee not more than two hours after the relevant playing session, or the particular infringement complained against. The Committee may decide on the following matters:

  1. an appeal against a decision by an arbiter or a FIDE principal,
  2. a protest against a player's behaviour,
  3. a complaint alleging false interpretation of the regulations,
  4. a request for the interpretation of specific regulations,
  5. a protest or complaint against any participant, or
  6. all other matters which the Committee considers important.

6.4.3 If possible, the Committee shall reach a decision not more than two hours after the submission of a protest. The appeals process shall include written representations and a written decision. The Committee shall endeavour to find binding solutions that are within the true spirit of the FIDE motto, Gens Una Sumus. Each protest must be accompanied by a deposit fee of 500 euros (five hundred euros) or the equivalent in local currency. If the protest is accepted, the fee shall be returned. If the protest is rejected, the fee may be forfeited to FIDE.
6.4.4 The written decision of the Appeals Committee arising from any dispute in respect of these regulations shall be final.

7. Tournament regulations for the World Cities Chess Team Championship

7.1 Laws of Chess

The general FIDE laws shall be applied with their supplements and interpretations as laid down by the FIDE Rules Commission. The following specific regulations for the FIDE World Team Championship will also be in force.

7.2 System of play

32 teams shall be divided into 8 groups of 4 teams each according to their seed number as follows. In these pairings teams who play each other in the Group RR are not scheduled to meet again until the final. Colours will be drawn at the Opening Ceremony.
Group A: Teams 1, 16, 17, 25
Group B: Teams 2, 15, 18, 26
Group C: Teams 3, 14, 19, 27
Group D: Teams 4, 13, 20, 28
Group E: Teams 5, 12, 21, 29
Group F: Teams 6, 11, 22, 30
Group G: Teams 7, 10, 23, 31
Group H: Teams 8, 9, 24, 32
Each preliminary group shall play a single round robin. The top two from each group advance to the Round-of-16 and shall be paired as follows (In all succeeding matches, first named has White on board 1):
R16 Match 1: Group B winner vs. Group D runner-up,
R16 Match 2: Group E winner vs. Group G runner-up,
R16 Match 3: Group F winner vs. Group H  runner up,
R16 Match 4: Group C winner vs. Group A runner-up,
R16 Match 5: Group D winner vs. Group B runner-up,
R16 Match 6: Group H winner vs. Group F runner-up,
R16 Match 7:Group G winner vs. Group E runner-up,
R16 Match 8: Group A winner vs. Group C runner-up

Time control for the event is 90 min/40 moves +30 min/end, with 30 seconds additional time per move, starting from move 1.

The Quarterfinal shall be paired as follows:
QF1: Winner of Match 1 vs Winner of Match 2
QF2: Winner of Match 3vs Winner of Match 4
QF3: Winner of Match 5 vs. Winner of Match 6
QF4: Winner of Match 7 vs. Winner of Match 8
The Semifinal shall be paired as follows:
SF1: Winner of QF1 vs. Winner of QF2
SF2: Winner of QF3 vs. Winner of QF4
The Final Match shall be paired as follows:
Winner of SF1 vs. Winner of SF2
Each round the list of the team composition for that round will be delivered to arbiters at 9:00 am morning. Otherwise, that round the top 4 boards will be accepted as the playing team. For the group Round Robins, the same rule will be applied.

7.3 Scoring

Each match will be scored by match points as used in the FIDE Olympiad. Winner will get 2 points, a draw will give each team 1 point, and a loss is scored as 0 points.

In the Round Robin Preliminaries if any teams finish with equal match points, the tie shall be resolved as follows:

  1. by total game points.
  2. if a tie again results, the scores obtained by the tying teams against each other will decide, first by match points then by game points;
  3. if a tie again results, then Sonnenborn Berger systems will be used.
  4. if a tie again results, it shall be decided by board count (Berlin System) as follows:
    • win on Board 1 is 4 points
    • win on Board 2 is 3 points
    • win on Board3 is 2 points
    • win on Board 4 is 1 point

In case of drawn games these points are shared. If the board-count results in no victory for either side then the board points of Board 4 are cancelled and so on upwards until the tie is broken.

  1. if a tie still results between teams, one player from each team shall play a sudden-death knockout of 6 minutes for white and 5 minutes for black to be decided by the Chief Arbiter.

1. The blitz games shall be played according to the following:

    • 2. Play is governed by the Laws of Chess which apply with the exceptions mentioned below (2, 3 and 4).
    • 3. The players do not need to record the moves. An arbiter shall record the moves.
    • 4. The player who has the move may stop the clock and consult the Arbiter’s score sheet and if his next move will produce a threefold repetition of position (according to Article 9.2a of the Laws of Chess), or the 50 moves rule (according to Article 9.3a of the Laws of Chess), he himself must write the intended move on the score sheet and claim the draw if he wants.
    • 5. A player can also claim a draw according to articles 9.2b and 9.3b of the Laws of Chess. If the claim is found to be correct, the game is immediately ended as a draw. If the claim is found to be incorrect, the Arbiter shall add three (3) minutes to the opponent’s remaining time and the game continues with the intended move in accordance with Article 4 of the Laws of Chess. A maximum of two (2) incorrect claims for a draw can be made by each player. If a player makes a 3rd incorrect claim, the arbiter shall declare the game lost for this player.
    • If a game has ended by resignation, checkmate, time loss, stalemate, triple repetition or any other of the ways described in article 5 of the Laws of Chess, no claim for irregularities shall be accepted (irregularities include clock settings and all other described in article 7 of the Laws of Chess).
    • The team shall draw lots for color before the match.
    • The games shall be played according to the Rules mentioned in f.1.
    • Tie break games and sudden death games shall start at the same time as decided by the Chief Arbiter.

7.3b In case of ties in the knock out stages, ties shall be broken by sudden death matches over three boards.

    • The games shall be played according to the blitz Rules above.
    • A new draw of lots shall be made before the match. The player with the white pieces shall receive 6 minutes, the opponent with the black pieces shall receive 5 minutes whereupon, after the 60th move, both players shall receive an increment of 3 seconds for each move from move 61. In case of a draw the player with the black pieces is declared the winner.

8. Prizes and Awards

8.1 Sheikh Zayed Cup

The winning city in the World Cities Chess Team Championship shall be awarded the Sheikh Zayed Cup.
The Sheikh Zayed Cup is property of FIDE.
The Sheikh Zayed Cup is to be competed for at each successive championship. It cannot be acquired in perpetuity and must be returned to the FIDE President or his nominee on demand.
A total of $150,000 in cash prizes shall be awarded for the World Cities Championship for the Sheikh Zayed Cup as follows:
16 Losers of Round Robin Groups receive $2,500 each
8 Losers of Round of 16 receive $4,000 each
4 Losers of Quarterfinals receive $5,000 each
Fourth Place receives $10,000
Third Place receives $12,000
Second Place receives $15,000
Champion receives $21,000

9. Conclusion of the World Cities Chess Team Championship

9.1 Closing ceremony

The closing ceremony with honours to the winning team shall be held in the evening on the day of the final round. It should follow the same guidelines as the opening ceremony (where applicable); in addition, the winning team`s national anthem shall be played.

9.2 Reports

As soon as possible, the Chief Arbiter and the chairman of the appeals committee shall deliver to the FIDE President an official written report on the course of the contest, with supporting documents if appropriate.
The FIDE Technical Delegate shall submit his report on the overall organization of the event including such incidents which may have happened.
Within two weeks after the Closing Ceremony, the Organizing Federation shall submit a written report and all the scoresheets to FIDE.

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