Shelby Lyman on Chess: The High Price of Cheating
Sunday, May 10, 2015
(Published in print: Sunday, May 10, 2015)

It would seem that the chess career of grandmaster Gaioz Nigalidze is effectively over.

Allegedly caught cheating — with the help of a concealed iPhone — during the recent Dubai Open tournament, the reigning Georgian champion faces a 15-year ban by the World Chess Federation.

If his guilt is confirmed, he will, at the very least, be persona non grata in international chess circles.

Subject to such opprobrium, it is unlikely he will be able to play chess effectively again. There are few of us brazen enough even to appear publicly after such a disaster.

Despite a grandmaster title, his actual chess ability is now in question. How well can he play without computer backup?

It seems an act of sheer idiocy to repeatedly consult a chess application — pathetically concealed in a toilet stall — without the expectation of detection.

How capable is such a person of coping unaided with the rigors of top-level competitive chess, where precise and realistic decision-making are a matter of survival?

It is possible that FIDE will impose a significant term of banishment, as well as abrogate his title.

An extreme ban of 15 years is, of course, a virtual death sentence in any sport.

For hundreds of years, chess has remained relatively free of corruption and scandal.

Nigalidze has unashamedly defiled a temple of art, sport and science in painful disregard of those who cherish it.

Full article here.

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