Everybody who missed the national qualifications for the European Championships of Riichi Mahjong (ECR) has now a second chance for a seat in Hannover: After quite some consideration the organisers decided to draw lots for the unused quotas.
After it was clear that Japan will not use their six seat quota for the ECR the organisers first tried to find players in EMA nations with no initial share to maximize the internationality of the tournament – but with little success: neither Belgium nor Spain or Hungary could nominate any Riichi player. The only addition came from Switzerland – so welcome aboard.
What to do with the reamining seats? Many nations with players on their waiting lists had asked for additional seats before – more nations than the left-over 3-4 seats (it’s still unclear if Sweden will use their quota). Giving those seats with priority to the small quotas would be hard, as many of those nations had problems to even name those few players – giving priority to the large quotas would easily fill the competition, but would be unfair for “mid-sized” quotas with capacity for more players.
The fairest idea which came up was: leave it to fortune! So now everybody from every nation may apply for one of the left-over seats until 15 June (next Tuesday) – applicants need to have Riichi tournament competency, of course. On Wednesday 16 June there will be a lottery, which shall be videoed for later broadcast on the Internet.
Please note that the participation fee is also due next Tuesday and all unpaid registrations (even from nominated players) may later be canceled by the organisers, if no special arrangement was made about an alternate payment procedure (of course there will be a short buffer period, but better take no risk).