No, no, not another poll!

At least this time you get to cast the votes yourselves rather than relying on some corrupt FIDE delegates to make the right choice! This image is used under Creative Commons terms and sourced from the European Parliament Flickr photostream

At least this time you get to cast the votes yourselves rather than relying on some corrupt FIDE delegates to make the right choice! This image is used under Creative Commons terms and sourced from the European Parliament Flickr photo stream

FCO 2014 ‘Best Team Name’ competition

Just when you thought it was safe to forget about voting and elections… we choose this moment to launch our FCO 2014 ‘Best Team Name’ poll!

Shortlisting is now complete. We’ve narrowed the field down to just 10 of the best for you our public, to choose from. This year we had a total of 896 team names to go through and we had a lot of fun deciding which of these to put into the shortlist.

But before we show you the finalists let’s mention some of the many other excellent and creative team names that didn’t quite make it.

Understandably with the Olympiad taking place on Norwegian soil, there were quite a few names that took the host nation as their inspiration: ‘Norway will I win’ and ‘Norwegian Wood pushers’ were two of the better ones but in the end we shortlisted ‘Midnight Sun Shiners!!’ which is a subtle and indirect reference to the host city as well as a compliment to the players selected into the team’s line up.

No surprises for guessing that there were also plenty of team names that played on Norway’s World Champion and undoubted star of the show, Magnus Carlsen. These included ‘Swagnus Carlsen’ and ‘Magnanimus’. In the end though we didn’t think there were any such derivatives that were of sufficient creativity to get into the final 10.

There was a very rich seem of word play to be found in the names of players from the diverse nations taking part in the Olympiad. We shortlisted the excellent ‘Svidler on the Roof’, ‘Hou’s the best?’ and ‘Kissin’ in the Bacrot of the movies’ which all made us laugh out loud. There were lots of others in a similar vein (though not all based on players actually at the Olympiad) that are worthy of praise however. Witness, ‘Fish Anand Chips’ (if Anand had been at the Olympiad I think this would have made the shortlist) ‘One foot in the Vachier-Lagrave’, ‘Irina’s 2750+ Elo Krushers’, ‘Nigel Short’s Shorts’, ‘Wei Yifront’ and ‘You can’t spell chess without Hess’ (can’t think who’s team that might have belonged to!) There was one glorious missed opportunity in this category too in our opinion. One FCO manager gave us the obvious but amusing ‘Knight’s who say Ni!’ we must say that if this player had thought of giving us ‘Knight’s who say Victoria Ni!’ they’d have made the shortlist.

Players from yesteryear did not escape the ribaldry either. There was ‘Fischer’s Boobies’ (appropriately enough this is a team that was created to contest for the booby prize), ‘Bent on Larseny’ and ‘Meander-Tal and Co’. However, we shortlisted the excellent ‘Frankensteinitz’s Monster’ which we considered to be an original conceit reflecting the piece-meal fashion in which both the team’s name and its members have been put together.

Another significant number of entries played on the names of the pieces on the chessboard. There was ‘Long Days Journey into knights’, ‘KID Rook’, ‘Krazy, Krazy Knights’, ‘Rook & Roll’, ‘Between a rook and a hard place’ and ‘Pawn Cocktail’. We didn’t shortlist any of these but we did shortlist a couple of other team’s whose names directly refer to the game itself. ‘b2 or not b2?’ and ‘Back rank amateurs’ were thought to be both witty and appropriate.

Chess players must be a hungry lot for there were a vast array of cuisine-related names. We didn’t shortlist any of them but there were some close contenders amongst the likes of ‘Chessburger’, ‘En Passandwich’, ‘Raiders of the lost fork’, ‘Pawn Cocktail’, ‘Fish Anand Chips’ and ‘Chesston Blumenthal’ (one for our UK audience there which was also the reason why we didn’t shortlist it.).

 This just leaves us with a group of names that can only be categorised as ‘Other’. We put the deceptively simple but hilariously funny ‘Pick your knows’, the clever musical reference ‘Caissa Chiefs’ and the sly ‘Victorious Secret’ in to the final 10. Some of the other contenders included ‘Master Maters’, ‘Obi Wan Kenobi Nil’, the completely obscure ‘Brutal Wombat’ and finally, one for our friends at Chess24 ‘Keep calm… and just resign’

The shortlist of 10 is now available for you to vote on – use the button below. Remember its one vote per person (the form will prevent repeat visits) but you can enlist the help of friends, family and any acquaintances you can muster to help drive up your vote – just no bribery or political shenanigans ok? We’ve had our fill of that this week.

Every one that votes in the poll will be entered into a prize draw for taking the time. The prize is a tournament folding chess set bundle including Gambit Club Chess Pieces with 95mm King, a high quality folding chessboard, a cotton drawstring bag and an analogue chess clock. You’ll also win a Judit Polgar wall poster courtesy of Chess Club Live.

The poll will be open until 23:59 (GMT) on Thursday the 14th of August after which votes will be counted and a winner announced.

Vote now


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