Friday, August 2, 2013

Pestaño: All about Elo ratings

Friday, August 2, 2013

WHENEVER new players meet, one of the questions asked is “What is your rating?”
The Elo rating system is a method for calculating the relative skill levels of chess players. It is represented by a number, which increases or decreases based upon the outcome of games between rated players.
Elo is not an abbreviation nor an acronym but the name of a person who created the system. Arpad Elo was a professor of physics at Marquette University in Milwaukee and a chess master who died in 1992.
In 1970 the World Chess Federation adopted the Elo Rating System.
Here are some significant statistics. There are 145 chess federations in Fide and but only 116,362 members are Fide-rated. The top 10 countries are Germany, Russia, Spain, France, India, Poland ,Hungary, Italy, Czech Republic and Serbia.
The first seven countries have almost the same number as the rest of the 138 countries combined and the top 20 countries (85,439) have almost three times as many as the rest (30,923).
The last 50 countries have only about 2,217 players or four times lesser than France (8,033) and only 26 federations have more than 1,000 Fide-rated members. The Philippines has only 405.
These points were raised several times in the past during elections as Bermuda or the Virgin Islands have one vote, the same as Russia, China or the USA, which is rather ridiculous.
There are an estimated 700 million people in the world who play chess but only a minimal number play in tournaments.
There’s no such thing as an “average” chess rating, as it varies in different countries and clubs. A solid club-level player, like those in Cepca, might be rated somewhere around 1600-1800. Above 1800, then it really begins to thin out.
Chess prodigies Kyle Sevillano and Felix Shaun Balbona are now rated 2091 and 2040 respectively and they are considered as “experts.” There are a lot of them around but from getting from expert to master is a huge jump and only a few make it.
An analysis of Elo ratings showed the following numbers worldwide. 5,839 players had an active rating in the range 2200 to 2299, which have the Candidate Master title.
2,998 players are rated in the range 2300 to 2399, most of whom are Fide Masters.
1,382 players are rated between 2400 and 2499, all of whom are either IMs or GMs. 587 players are rated between 2500 and 2599, most of whom are GMs. 178 players are rated between 2600 and 2699, all but one GMs. 43 players are rated between 2700 and 2799 including Wesley So. Three players are over 2800. namely Magnus Carlsen, Levon Aronian and Vladimir Kramnik.
Cepca members who have high ratings are Jobannie Tabada, former sports editor of Sun.Star Cebu, who is rated 2210. Former president Ben Dimaano (a Philippine Junior champion) has a rating of 2200. 2012 Cepca Grand Champion Rey Flores had a performance rating of 2300 in the last Philippine National games, participated by almost all grandmasters, and he is already 55 years old!
Other highly-rated Cepca members are Joe Atillo 2000, current president Jojo Muralla 2010, Bong San Pascual 2080, and Mike Banebane 2155. Those are almost 2000 are Peterson Sia 1985, Nicnic Climaco 1970, Percival Fiel 1957 and Manny Manzanares 1949.
Some Cepca ratings are based on the previous PCF list not NCFP.
Fide classifies tournaments into categories according to the average rating of the players. Each category is 25 rating points wide. Category 1 is for an average rating of 2251 to 2275, Category 2 is 2276 to 2300, etc. For women’s tournaments, the categories are 200 rating points lower, so a Category 1 is an average rating of 2051 to 2075, etc. The highest-rated tournament was Category 22, with an average from 2776 to 2800.
The only Category 22 tournament that I know was the 2011Tal Memorial in Moscow.
Most of the tournaments in Cebu are  uncategorized as these are below category 1.

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