I did not expect to find a picture of Hikaru at Munich Airport but there it was! Since it was a night-flight I did not read a lot last night watching Emirates excellent movie selection instead. Some Wonton Western, I think it was called the way of the Warrior or the Warriors way. Quite entertaining but I digress.
Four hours in Dubai is easy to kill, first you may have a shower (!!), something not available at all airports and then have a superb breakfast at Paul's Cafe. A few things stood out. First NIC is bigger than before so a bit easier to read but a bit harder to carry. Cancels out I guess. The annotations are as always mainly by the players themselves and this generation of youngsters are good writers, witty and interesting. Anish Giri and I both like the same Superhero it seems. Captain Hindsight!
Near the end of my Coffee I noticed a rant by Nigel Short. I always read Nigel's rants. He is a very entertaining writer, has a great turn of phrase and does not mind being unambiguous in his opinion. This particular one, though entertaining was a slight disappointment. It is advertised as being about the
French Cheating Scandal but without going into any juicy detail Nigel immediately turns to his favourite whipping dog Fido. I have to take issue with Nigel on two points, one, that corruption doesn't exist or is not so prevalent in other Sports and two, that another group of people would do a better job.
On point one just of the top of my head I can think of the Cricket match-fixing scandals in most Commonwealth Countries, the Italian Football Scandals which involved a lot of Clubs, officials, umpires etc.
The second point I think is more a difference of approach. While I have strong Socialist leanings Nigel would prefer to "privatize". The structure of Fide is truly democratic and in theory should work well. If the Chess community (that's us) made an effort we could effect change. It is apathy that allows corruption to flourish.
One last comment about the French team. It was they themselves that blew the whistle, They deserve a lot of credit for their actions
Maxime Vachier-Lagrave, Laurent Fressinet, Vladislav Tkachiev and Romain Edouard brought the issue to the attention of officials and then supported their federation
Meanwhile Sebastian Feller is denying everything and intends to play the EU CH while his appeal is being heard.