Direct Comparison

When all tie-breakers fail and some players obtain the same final standings, direct comparison comes into play. The other way around: When the final standings are already sufficient to arrange the players unambiguously, the Compa column remains empty. This happens in almost 99 % of all games. So you have to try hard to find an example of direct comparisons. Don’t panic, hang in there!

Direct comparisons have been introduced by the ISF on 2010-12-16 (section 14.2) as the final tie-breaker.

To stop keeping you in suspense, I’ll provide the first example, the tournament of Wuppertal on 2011-04-09. The cross-table of the junior-results contains two pairs of players with equal score, Median-Buchholz score, and Buchholz score. This is an example were the direct comparison rescues us from trouble. Both games between the pairs end up decisively. This is denoted by ±1/1 which means that the player has got ±1 win from 1 game. This time we were lucky and the direct comparison helped us to evaluate the performance of the players unambiguously.

However, the next example teaches us that the direct comparison fails to resolve ambiguities too often. One more year ago, Wuppertal on 2010-04-10, there were two groups of three players with equal final standings. Unfortunately the results within both groups were cyclic. I.e., ABCA. In other words: Player A had a win and a loss, so had player B, so had C. Added up, each player scored zero in his equal-standing-group. The column contains +0/2 meaning that the players got 0 points out of 2 games. Though this seems unlikely, it isn’t. At least in round-robin tournaments.


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