Tuesday, 1 October 2013

George Trundle Masters Round 4

Today's game was a bit shaky and I blame facebook :-) I was engaged in a frivolous conversation about  the Borislav Ivanov case until about 3am. Just in case you have not heard about it or are not a serious chessplayer, allow me to summarise.

Borislav Ivanov is a Bulgarian amateur who has been performing remarkably well. So well in fact that many people have gotten their panties in a knot lately, not least the many highly rated grandmasters he has beaten. Now, tis true that his performances are way off the scale and the speed at which he plays his moves, which are nearly always the first choice of the best computer programs, may seem suspicious. A specialist, Kenneth Regan has written extensively on the case and has even been kind enough to point me in the direction of his evidence. Very compelling.

What makes this case interesting is that since Zadar 2012 he has been watched like a hawk. Others have been caught cheating { allegedly }, most notably Sebastian Feller at the chess Olympiad, but in all cases they were either caught using mobiles or friends or captains, like in the alleged Feller case, relaying moves by some sort of signal.
Borislav is unique because he sits motionless at the board, does not go to the toilet or anywhere else, does not look at anybody but plays his incredibly strong moves at a fast but steady tempo.

Anyway, for me the main question is HOW he cheats, if in fact he does. Apparently his performances do not taper off in rapid either as he proved in the Andonov Memorial in Kyustendi, scoring 7.5/9 against a strong GM field. My source informs me that he played at a very steady tempo, moving every 5-7 seconds.

The reason why his method is important is that if a stronger player used it and did so a bit more subtly, nobody would ever know. Do we know that Borislav's undetectable method, if in fact he is cheating, is not being used?

Anyway, I slept in, had barely enough time for a coffee and the morning essentials so my game was a bit below par. 16.Bb7 was a fine zwischenzug but I should have followed up by 17. Bc6. I simply missed the great defensive move 18....Qb5. Then 30.Be2 was a horrendous blunder allowing an instant draw with 30....Rb2. Luckily for me my opponent was already very short on time. After that my technique was as awful as ever but all that did was prolong the game.

Tournament hall

Anyway, I'll try to focus a bit more tomorrow :-)

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