News 2020

India - Armenia: Appeals Committee Resolution

Moscow, August 28, 2020

The Appeals Committee considered the protest of the Armenian team against the result of the 1st match of the India-Armenia quarterfinal. In this match, the game between Nihal Sarin and Haik Martirosyan was considered a defeat for the Armenian team after its player got disconnected.

According to the regulations for the event, which were discussed in detail with the team captains, the quality and stability of the of Internet connection is the sole responsibility of the players.

In their appeal, the Armenian team pointed out that the specified player was connected to the zoom call during the whole incident, and the video call was not interrupted. In their opinion, this confirms the normal operation of the Internet connection in the game room, and proves that the technical problems were limited to the website.

The Appeals Committee would like to point out that as a general rule (section 2 of the technical requirements for players), the quality of the Internet connection is the responsibility of the player, including its reliability and stability. The practice of applying this point during the Olympiad has been already established in previous incidents. Among other examples, the Indian national team (the current rival of Armenia in this match) lost two games in a match with the Mongolian team precisely for reasons of the quality of the Internet.

Thus, in order to overcome this presumption, the evidence of the site's guilt must be direct and prove the guilt beyond any doubt. No other reliable evidence of problems on the game server was presented to the Appeals Committee, in addition to the general conclusion provided by the Armenian team. The Appeals Committee also noted that there were problems with the quality of the Internet in one of the other games of the match, where the normal course of the game was restored 3 minutes after the failure. No appeal was filed by any of the teams in this case. In the game being considered as part of the appeal, the Armenian player had about 50 seconds to restore the connection, which turned out to be insufficient.

In the current situation, any other decision would be inconsistent with the tournament regulations, creating a precedent that could lead to further conflincting situations. The Appeals Committee also finds that any other decision would be unfair to the opposing team. In view of this, the Appeals Committee decides to reject the appeal of the Armenian team. The Armenian team will not be charged for presenting this appeal.

Appeals Committee:
Arkady Dvorkovich, FIDE President
Michael Khodarkovsky, IO
Sava Stoisavljevic, IA, WFM