STATEMENT BY SELECTION COMMITTEE
Active Association with Welsh Chess
1. By virtue of section 8(c) of the WCU Constitution the Selection Committee has to "exclude from consideration for international events those who have not actively associated themselves with Welsh Chess" . This statement sets out how the Committee approaches this requirement in resolving competition for selection.
2. Where players are felt not to have actively associated theselves with Welsh chess at the time when a particular selection is being considered they will be completely ruled out for that event. Where, on the other hand, a player is deemed not to be excluded then his or her place in the team etc under consideration will be determined purely on chess-playing merit. In other words degrees of active association will not be used as a means of making decisions in marginal cases or in determining such matters as board order.
3. As well as being current members of the WCU, players are expected to have shown a willingness to involve themselves in Welsh Chess in the two years prior to the Selection Committee meeting. To that extent temporary inactivity as a result, for example, of domestic or career crises will not rule a player out of consideration.
4. The standard of involvement is not absolute but may vary from player to player depending on individual circumstances but a certain minimum compliance will be expected of everyone. No hard and fast rules can be set down in establishing this minimum and each case will be decided on its merits but the following are relevant considerations:-
a) It is accepted that international appearances for Wales may well make considerable calls on an individual's time and indeed financial resources but in themselves they do not satisfy the 'active association' requirement. After all, aspirants to places in Welsh teams must be given a reasonable opportunity to play existing members.
b) Regular appearances in the Welsh Championship are highly desirable and go a considerable way to satisfying the requirement but these appearances must normally be supplemented annually by one or more of the following:
i. playing for a club in the Welsh Chess Premier League;
ii. participation in one or more of the half dozen or so open congresses held in Wales each year;
Playing regularly for an essentially Welsh team in the 4NCL is also a means of helping to satisfy the ‘active association’ requirement whilst also demonstrating form against potentially strong opposition but will not often involve a player in meeting rivals for selection. Similarly considerations apply to participation in a Welsh local league though here the general standard of opposition is likely to be much lower and the playing conditions very different from those in international events.
5. It is understood that players qualified for Wales but not resident in Wales have a particular problem and consequently are not expected to compete in Wales to the same extent as residents. Nevertheless, non-residents are under an obligation to make a special effort to maintain their ties with Welsh Chess - it would clearly be quite wrong that international teams should comprise an elite seldom playing against other Welsh chessplayers. Non-residents are finally reminded that such activities as helping in training programmes, for example by offering coaching over the internet, or assisting in the administration of Welsh chess, whilst not a substitute for playing chess in Wales, do serve to strengthen links with Welsh Chess and carry some weight in determining whether players have actively associated themselves with Welsh Chess.
FIDE Eligibility Rules
Basic FIDE Rule
6. To represent Wales in a FIDE individual or team event, including European Chess Union events, a player must also satisfy the rules in section 05 of FIDE’s handbook (available online). Under these rules a player must be registered with FIDE under the federation which he or she represents in a FIDE event.
Transferring FIDE registration with another country to Wales
7. Under the normal FIDE procedure this will involve agreement by the other federation to release the player, proof that the player’s connections with Wales (by birth or residence) are sufficiently close and payment of a fee to FIDE of E250.
8. In addition, players changing their federation in this way cannot represent Wales until a year has elapsed since the player was formally transferred. This waiting period, which is increased to two years if the player has represented the old federation in a FIDE event, can be waived on payment of a further fee in accordance with the table in the FIDE handbook.
9. Players wishing to transfer their FIDE registration to Wales should contact the WCU International Director. The player being transferred must bear all the FIDE fees.
European Chess Union Eligibility Rules
10. These rules are found in section B1 of the ECU Tournament Rules 2012 (available on the ECU website). It is possible that these rules may impose requirements which go beyond those of FIDE in circumstances where a player has changed his or her FIDE registration to Wales by virtue of becoming resident here without holding a qualification based on place of birth in Wales. Again players potentially affected should contact the International Director.
Howard Williams ~ Chairman of Selectors