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FIDE rules seem to say that I have to claim draw (3-repetition and 50-move) before I actually touch/move my piece. And if I move my piece first, and then claim the draw, it doesn't count.

1) Is this really what FIDE is saying?

2) If so, why??? It's the (seeming) inconsistency which confuses me.

Why not either:

a) I cannot claim draw before I move, nor can I claim draw after I move

a) I am able to claim draw before I move, and I am able to claim draw after I move (but before I hit my clock)


Here's the sentence from the rules:

If the player touches a piece as in Article 4.3 without having claimed the draw he loses the right to claim, as in Article 9.2 or 9.3, on that move.

Here is more context:

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.

9.3

    The game is drawn, upon a correct claim by the player having the move, if:

        a. he writes his move on his scoresheet and declares to the arbiter his
        intention to make this move, which shall result in the last 50 moves
        having been made by each player without the movement of any pawn and
        without any capture, or

        b. the last 50 consecutive moves have been made by each player without
        the movement of any pawn and without any capture.

9.4

    If the player touches a piece as in Article 4.3 without having claimed the
    draw he loses the right to claim, as in Article 9.2 or 9.3, on that move.
  • 1
    You must claim a draw while it is your turn to move, I'm not sure what part of this seems inconsistent to you. The reason for this is to avoid distracting the opponent with a draw offer during his turn. – M.M Apr 26 '18 at 3:45
  • 1
    The answer is simple although it can be lengthy. In short the issue is that you are claiming a position that is not on the board yet. Since you are not allowed to make the claim when it is not your move you would not normally be able to claim that position. The rule sets a special procedure for doing so. The reason is fairness so that both players have the opportunity to claim the same position. – IA Petr Harasimovic Apr 26 '18 at 11:24
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Hi thanks for the question!

Yes this is what FIDE are saying. If you are about to play the 50.0th move of the sequence, or to cause a position to occur for the third time, then you need to claim before you move.

I think this is because after you have moved the piece, your opponent is allowed to respond, without waiting for you to punch the clock. If you then say "hey wait a minute" then this could be disruptive when one or both players are in time trouble. Best make the draw claim when it's clearly your turn to take the next action, i.e. before the piece is moved.

I am sure that people sometimes forget in the excitement though, which must be very frustrating!

  • 1
    "your opponent is allowed to respond, without waiting for you to punch the clock" Really? That would mean my opponent is moving on my time, not theirs. How do the laws allow this? – Rosie F Aug 26 at 6:49
  • Hi Rosie F yes I think the Laws explicitly allow this, but I have raised a question to explicitly get an answer to your point – Laska Nov 27 at 5:27

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