Monday, March 22, 2010


There are cheaters in Malaysian chess scene after all! Reading Rizal's and Sifu's blogs confirmed what I feared most. And it happened to me before in my early chess experience.

My First Story

Several years ago I was cheated by a good Malaysian chess player, but part of it was due to my naivety. It was a three-fold-repetition, watched by many spectators, but in the end what really matters were the players themselves. I should have claimed the repetition before I moved my King at the same place for the third time. What happened was after I moved the King, stopped the clock and raised my hand to call the arbiter, he promptly moved his pawn and pressed the clock before the arbiter arrived. When the arbiter finally came, the pawn structure had already changed, thus the three-fold-repetition claim was no longer valid. A sporting and gentleman player would have accept the draw, but not this man, who went on to win the game amidst my confusion. After the game, somebody told me that I still had the opportunity to claim the draw after the pawn move, because I was the one who stopped the clock (can somebody with knowledge of the chess rule confirm this, please?).

My Second Story

It was at a rapid game, with 25 minutes per person. I was still an amateur then, a matriculation student at IIUM, with only several tournaments of experience to boast. I was waiting at the table for over 20 minutes now, and my opponent has yet to show his face. When it was certain (I checked the clock several times, mind you!) that there was only around 2 minutes left of his clock, I stood up and stopped to watch my friend's game on my way to the arbiter's table. Not long after that, a guy touched me at the back and asked me to make my move. I was perplexed and duly went to the table with him. I noticed that there was still 5 minutes remaining on his clock! As I was a junior then, I did not have the courage to ask him where did the 5 minutes come from as I was certain that he had lost on time and I was on my way to the arbiter's table. I played on to his Alekhine Defense and lost.

So, should these guys be banned? Not likely. Nobody probably will do anything until it happen to them personally. Nevertheless, my personal opinion is that the person in Rizal's case should be banned from local chess scene, as it will tarnish its image.

In Islam, chess is permitted with strict rules, one of which involved using vulgar words throughout the game. Cheating can be included in this rule, IMHO, because it is more dangerous than merely speaking some nasty words which probably do not alter the outcome of the game. Moreover, I agree with Rizal that the winnings (nowadays in the form of money) would not be advisable to feed the loved ones as it is after all acquired from incorrect means.


Jimmy Liew said...

Once you have made your move, you cannot claim repetition anymore. This is nothing to do with sportsmanship. Rules are rules. You should read and understand the chess laws and rules if you want to play chess. After your opponent made his move, you can still claim if the repetition re-occurs (unlikely since he moved a pawn).

n@jd0rf said...

Thanks.. I agree that the game taught me something.. I bought a chess law book in order for this thing to not happen again.. but still I felt cheated AT THAT TIME.. and please I don't intentionally want to defame my opponent.. I don't even mention his name...

Ramone said...

How would you prove that it was a 3 move repetition when the arbiter arrive? The opponent could just deny it. In rapid play, it is always unlikely moves would be recorded.

n@jd0rf said...

It's not rapid play. The moves were recorded. It's just the way of claiming the draw was wrong. I didn't know it then, but now I know. Never will be repeated.


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