Chess (#1021)

Last Updated: Fri, Nov 02, 2012 20:41 hrs

The German Bundesliga has been hit by a cheating scandal. In a league match between SC Eppingen and Katernberg, GM Falko Bindrich of Eppingen was disqualified for carrying a smartphone during his game against GM Sebastian Siebrecht.

The rules are clear: “the players may not have access to mobile phones, computers or other electronic devices, except at the express permission of the arbiter” and an arbiter is entitled to search the player’s person and/or inspect any such device if he “has reasonable suspicion”.

In this instance, the arbiter had noted a complaint against Bindrich, when the Eppingen player beat Pavel Tregubov with a precise endgame combination. Tregubov pointed out that Bindrich made several protracted visits to the loo.

When Bindrich repeated this pattern of long loo visits after 10 moves against Siebrecht, the arbiter challenged him. Bindrich admitted he had a smartphone on his person and that it had a chess engine. But he refused to allow inspection, claiming it had “very private photos and data”.

Why would a player need a cellphone during a game under normal circumstances? If it is an emergency, he can leave it with his non-playing team captain, or the arbiters. Smartphone engines are strong enough to outplay Super GMs so this disqualification is automatic. The endgame against Tregubov does look suspicious. Admittedly, Bindrich shouldn’t have needed assistance after 10 moves against Siebrecht but maybe he had forgotten his prep.

Meanwhile, in Hoogeveen, Nakamura won the Unive premier league with a score of 4.5 from 6 in a double round robin ahead of Tiviakov (3), Giri (2.5), and Hou Yifan (2). The American GM won each of his white games for a 2848 performance. In the Open tournament, Erwin L’Ami and Friso Nijboer shared first with 7 from 9 rounds, ahead of Ernst, Timman, Van Kampen, Bosboom (all 6.5). L’ami had the better tie break and he beat Nijboer in the last round.

The following combination, WHITE TO PLAY, (Bindrich Vs Tregubov Bundesliga 2012) is precise enough to look like a composed study. 48.Na5! Re1+ 49.Kd3 Nb8 50.Nc6!! Rd1+ Now 50...Rb1 51.Nbd4+ Kd5 52.Nxb8 Rxb7 53.Nbc6 is winning and so obviously, is 50...Nxc6 51.Nd4+ Nxd4 52.b8Q.

51.Kc2 Nxc6 Returning the exchange seems forced and 51...Rd7 52.Nbd4+ Rxd4 ( or 52...Kd5 53.Nxb8 Rxb7 54.Nbc6) 53.Nxd4+ Kxe5 54.Kc3 is similar. The outside passer wins. The game ended with 52.Kxd1 Kxe5 53.Ke2 h5 54.Kf3 Nb8 55.h4 Kd5 Another typical “stretching” of the Kt would occur with 55...hxg4+ 56.Kxg4 Kd5 57.Kg5! Kc6 58.Kxg6 Kxb5 59.h5 56.g5 Kc6 57.Nd4+ Kxb7 58.Ke4 Nd7 59.Kd5 Kc8 60.Ke6 Kc7 61.Nf3 (1–0). Now white will enter with Kf7 or 61.--Kc7 62. Ne5+.

Devangshu Datta is an internationally rated chess and correspondence chess player

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