# [Retros] rights & ocasions

raosorio at fibertel.com.ar raosorio at fibertel.com.ar
Sun May 4 11:55:32 EDT 2014

Hi Joost,
On may the 3rd I wrote,

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How many two moves switchbacks could be legally performed by the kings
in the following position,

White Ke1, Rh1
Black Ke8, Ph2

Just to start.
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White 4, black 3 (and after the 4th return of the white king, the
position is draw).

Technically, white still has castling rights. Practically these rights
are nonexistent (no legal sequence exists in which white castles), but
the rule of threefold repetition only looks at the technical rights, not
the practical rights.
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Of course my point is related to "identical positions", the basis for "triple repetition".
The question was "both kings performs two switchbacks", continuing the game, and
the point is if it is considered that on the diagram position the castling right is something
that makes a difference with the position resulting from the first switchback.

"What does a right with definitively no ocassion to use it mean?"

I found that the present text of the FIDE Laws has changed, not using the term "rights" but trying to
be more explicit,

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9.2 The game is drawn upon a correct claim by the player having the move, when the same position,
for at least the third time (not necessarily by a repetition of moves):
a. is about to appear, if he first writes his move on his scoresheet and declares to the arbiter his
intention to make this move, or
b. has just appeared, and the player claiming the draw has the move.

Positions as in (a) and (b) are considered the same, if the same player has the move, pieces of the same
kind and colour occupy the same squares, and the possible moves of all the pieces of both players are the same. Positions are not the same if a pawn that could have been captured en passant can no longer be captured in this manner. When a king or a rook is forced to move, it will lose its castling rights, if any,
only after it is moved.
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But, as usual, the text is not clear enough. ".....and the possible moves of all the pieces of both players
are the same". When? In the immediate move or all the posible game development?

- The e.p. reference: isn't it pathetic? The e.p. is a "one shot" rigth by nature, so it is obvious that the
panw that made double step can not be captured e.p. two moves after (?!).
Some years ago there were a discussion in the Chess Caffe where Geurt Gijssen interpretated that
the e.p. right makes a difference in the position even if the e.p. is not legal because the capturing pawn
is pinned (?!). Nunn clearly pointed out his disagreement with this burocratic interpretation.
Anyway, in the present text "....if a pawn that could have been captured en passant .." is clear that
the pawn can not been captured e.p. if the capturing pawn is pinned.

- The castling right reference: "When a king or a rook is forced to move, it will lose its castling rights,
if any, only after it is moved". This apparently supports Joost's oopinion: the right is lost only after
the move". But what about "..if any.."? I insist with the question,
"What does a right with definitively no ocassion to use it mean?"

I resist to take the burocratic interpretations instead of the "spirit of the law" ones. Equivalently to the
50 moves rule, the triple repetition one is inspired by the practical intention of stopping a game where
nothing relevant is happening in a recurrent way. We were three times in the exactly same position:
where are we going to?

The relevant difference having the castling right intact is that I can develope a game that is not posible
without having the right. But in the position I propossed,

White Ke1, Rh1
Black Ke8, Ph2

white can not play 0-0, never, definitively. "What does a right with definitively no ocassion to use it mean?"
So, there are no posible games from the initial position that are not posible after a repetition.

And this is due to other Laws of Chess (castling is not legal if the king is checked after doing it) combined
with the moves of pieces (to remove the bP on h2 eather the wK or the wR has to move).

Some Lawyer's viewpoint would be useful here.

Best,