Back to 1998 CNSC

1998 CNSC Pairings

[ Revised Sun Jul 5 17:15:38 EDT 1998 ]

The 1998 CNSC will consist of an 18-game preliminary round followed by a best-of-five playoff between the top two finalists from the preliminary round. What follows is a proposal for a pairing system for the preliminary round, eventually to be implemented in the tournament pairing software. Please e-mail comments to

The goal of this system is to evaluate as fairly as possible who has played best in the preliminary round. Since players will be ranked in the end firstly according to their number of wins, it is important that players with similar W-L records face have faced opponents of similar strength. To take an extreme example, we do not want to have two people with 15 wins, one of whose opponents are all in the lower half of the field, while the other's opponents are all in the upper half.

Finally, I believe that the person who finishes first in the preliminary round should thereby earn the right to play first in the odd-numbered games of the playoff round. I base my belief on the notion that there ought to be some reason for players to prefer finishing first to second, but am willing to hear arguments why this might not be a good idea.

[1] At the (manually spread Swiss paired) 1997 WSC, Matt Graham reached the final round after having faced a significantly weaker field than Joel Sherman, because he lost several early games, and therefore got to play significantly weaker opponents throughout the middle of the tournament.