The PRO Chess League Qualifiers will take place over a series of eight tournaments. Each tournament will qualify one team to the PRO Chess League.
To register your team for the first qualifier event, SIGN UP HERE.
Below are the regulations:
A. Qualifier Dates: The four qualifier events for the 2020 PRO Chess League Season will take place in 2019 on Tuesday, September 24, October 8, October 22 and November 5. The exact starting times will be announced closer to the event.
B. Qualifier Rules:
B1: Each Qualifier Date will consist of two eight team round-robins, for a total of 16 teams, in which one team from each round-robin will qualify to the next PRO Chess League season.
B2: The round-robins will be largely divided by time zone.
B3: The PRO Chess League commissioner's office will have full discretion on which 16 teams will play in each qualifier event.
B4: The Round Robins will be an eight-round, eight-team event with a time control of 10 minutes to start the game and a two-second increment. Each team will play against every other team, and will get points based on how many games it wins (a total of 28 points is possible for each team for the first seven rounds). At the end of seven rounds, the top two teams in the standings will play one last round against each other, with their scores carrying over. At the end of this eighth round, the team with the most points will qualify for the next PRO Chess League season.
B5: At the end of the first qualifier, the teams that finish in second through fifth place in their round-robin will not qualify to play in the PRO Chess League, but they will automatically qualify for the second qualifier event. The teams that finish in sixth through eighth place will NOT qualify for the next qualifier and will likely be replaced by new teams. This process will repeat for the following qualifiers.
B6: Teams that play in a qualifier and finish in 6th-8th place will not be chosen to play in the next qualifier, but may be chosen to play in a later event. For instance, if your team finishes in sixth place in the first qualifier of the season, your team won't be asked to play in the second qualifier, but may be asked to play in the third or fourth. We may still add a sixth-eighth place finisher in the next Qualifier if we believe they are more deserving than the other candidate teams.
B7: If your team automatically qualifies for the next qualifier event by virtue of finishing in 2nd-5th place, you will still be required to have a team FIDE rating of 2450+. If your team's rating for the next qualifier is under 2450 FIDE, you forfeit your right to automatically play; however we may still choose your team to play if we believe you have a good chance to qualify even with a lower-rated lineup.
B8: All ties will be broken by a five-minute live Twitter fan vote. So work on your social media game if you want your team to have the best chance possibly to qualify!
C: Team Formation:
C1: To join, you will organize your team around one city, state or region (final jurisdiction of "local area" approved or denied by commissioner's office).
C2: Each team is made up of four players, three of whom must be "local" players and one who can be a "free agent." You are not required to use a free agent, and can instead use four local players.
C3: A free agent is a player from anywhere in the world.
C4: A local player is a player who is from the same region as your team. In all countries except for the United States, China, Russia and India, a local player will be someone who either lives in the same country as your team, or has lived there at some point for a continuous period of three full years.
C5: If your team is from the United States, China, Russia or India, your country is broken into sub-regions, which can be found at the end of this article. The location of your sub-region determines which players are considered local for
your team. *
C6: If your team qualifies for the PRO Chess League, anyone who played in that specific qualifier for your team is required to play on your team and be on your active roster during the PRO Chess League season immediately following the qualifier,
and cannot play for any other team. If your team does NOT qualify, everyone who played for your team in the qualifier is free for play on any team they wish.
C7: Each round your team will face another team. Your board one will play their board one, your board two will play their board two and etc.
C8: The four players on your team must play in order of their actual September Classical FIDE rating.
D: Team Ratings
D1: The most recent September Classical Rating List will be used to determine ratings for the Qualifier. These ratings will ALSO be used for the PRO Chess League Season
D2: The minimum rating per team is 2450.
D3: The maximum average rating must be under 2500 (2499.75 is legal, 2500.00 is not)
D4: Teams can potentially have a higher rating than 2500 as follows:
D.4.1. There are bonuses available for players above 2700 (their rating only counts as 2700 towards the average rating). This is to encourage more top players to participate in the league
D.4.2. There are bonuses available to female players (their rating = rating-100). Therefore a 2500-rated female would count as 2400 towards the average. This is to encourage more females to participate in the league.
D.4.3. Anyone rated under 2000 will be considered as rated 2000 towards the team's average rating. So an 1800 is treated as a 2000-rated player. A woman rated 2050, is treated as a 2000-rated player (and not a 1950-rated player).
D.4.4. We may allow some teams rated under 2450 in some exceptional circumstances.
E: Team Selection
We will choose teams based on many factors:
E1: Will your team stream on Twitch both during the qualifier and during the regular season?
E2: Do you already have an established and popular stream?
E3: Do you plan to frequently use Social Media like Twitter and Facebook to promote your team?
E3: Do you plan to include strong and popular players in your lineup?
E4: Do we expect you to field extremely strong lineups throughout the PCL season if you should qualify?
E5: How much energy and passion do you show for both your team and the PRO Chess League?
1. United States Regions
Region 1: New York, Maine, Vermont, New Hampshire, Massachusetts, Connecticut,
Rhode Island, New Jersey
Region 2: Pennsylvania, Ohio, Michigan, Maryland, District of Columbia, West
Virginia, Virginia, Delaware
Region 3: Florida, North Carolina, South Carolina, Georgia, Alabama, Tennessee,
Region 4: Missouri, Indiana, Illinois, Wisconsin, Iowa, Minnesota, Nebraska
Region 5: Texas, Oklahoma, Louisiana, Arkansas, Kansas
Region 6: Northern California, Washington, Oregon, Idaho, Montana, Wyoming,
South Dakota, North Dakota, Alaska
Region 7: Southern California, Nevada, Utah, Arizona, Colorado, New Mexico,
(This map shows the borders of Northern and Southern California that will be
used in the PCL)
2. Russia Regions
Region 1: Central District
Region 2: Volga District
Region 3: North Caucasian and Southern Districts
Region 4: Northwestern District
Region 5: Urals, Siberian and Eastern Districts
3. India Regions
Region 1: Jammu&Kashmir, Himachal Pradesh, Punjab, Uttar Pradesh, Uttrakhand,
Region 2: Rajasthan, Gujarat, Madhya Pradesh, Maharashtra, Dadra&Nagar Haveli
Region 3: Goa, Karnataka, Andhra Pradesh, Tamil Nadu, Kerala
Region 4: Telangana, Chhattisgarh, Orissa, Bihar, Jharkhand, West Bengal,
Sikkim, Meghalaya, Asom, Nagaland, Manipur, Mizoram, Aunachal Pradesh
4. China Regions
Region 1: Xinjiang, Tibet, Qinghai, Sichuan, Yunnan, Gansu, Ningxia
Region 2: Hainan, Guangxi, Guizhou, Chongqing, Hunan, Guangdong, Fujian, Jiangxi
Region 3: Hubei, Anhul, Zhejiang, Shanghai, Jiangsu
Region 4: Henan, Shandong, Beijing, Tianjin, Hebei, Shanxi, Shaanxi,
Heilongjiang, Jilin, Liaoning, Inner Mongolia