By GM ANDY SOLTIS
New York Post
October 15, 2006 — ‘WHAT’S this toilet scandal you have there?” Vladimir Putin asked Kirsan Ilyumzhinov.
The Russian president wondered why both players in the world championship match were threatening to walk out and sue the Ilyumzhinov’s world chess federation (FIDE) if their demands weren’t met.
Ilyumzhinov rushed home from Putin and to meet Vladimir Kramnik and Veselin Topalov late on Sept. 29, the day Kramnik forfeited the fifth game because he had to share a bathroom with Topalov.
He was getting advice from around the world, including from Bessel Kok, who tried to unseat him as FIDE president in May. The advice: Give Kramnik everything he wants.
But this would have prompted Topalov to walk out on the match.
Instead, Ilyumzhinov said, he checked with FIDE’s legal experts who said the law was on Topalov’s side. If the forfeit were overturned, Topalov could sue and win.
Iluymzhinov worked on a compromise, tossing out ideas such as lengthening the match. Eventually, he got both men to continue.
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