Originally posted by Paul Leggett
I think people may not be giving your question a fair hearing due to semantics.
We all know that a forced draw is legal, but that is not what you are asking. If I understand you correctly, your question can be restated to ask "Are the rules allowing a defender to force a draw a fair result for a game?" ...
If tim88 really meant (he might have, but I cannot be certain) what you assume
he did, then he should have expressed his question in words similar to those
that you have used. But he chose to write his question differently, and I don't
think that it's fair to blame other people for replying to his question as it was
written rather than assuming that he really meant something else. It was
generous and thoughtful of you, however, to suggest another interpretation
of his original question.
Is something necessarily fair simply because it's part of the rules?
The recent 'super-GM' tournament in Biel used 3-1-0 scoring, which every
player knew in advance. Going into the last round, Wang Hao (who had led for
most of the tournament) was tied with Anish Giri, 1 point behind Magnus Carlsen.
Given the scoring, both Wang Hao and Anish Giri had more incentive to play all-out
for a win against other. Wang Hao won that game and so overtook Carlsen, who
only drew his game against Etienne Bacrot. So the tournament's winner was
Wang Hao +6 =1 -3 (19 points) ahead of Magnus Carlsen +4 =6 =0 (18 points),
while traditional scoring would have placed Carlsen (7) ahead of Wang Hao (6.5).
Some people have complained that this outcome's 'unfair' because 1) they are
opposed in principle to 3-1-0 scoring or 2) they like Magnus Carlsen more than
they like Wang Hao. While I prefer traditional scoring, I have to say that 3-1-0
scoring should encourage players to take more risks in order to play for wins.
Going into the last round, Magnus Carlsen knew that he had to win his game
in order to guarantee winning the tournament, and he was unable to do that.
The 3-1-0 scoring was designed to reward a player for winning many games,
and that's what it did in this case.