I was in Sabah for 4 days. It was my first time on Borneo soil, and it was enjoyable beyond words. The Kota Kinabalu airport was by the sea while the journey towards the tournament venue in Likas Masterskill was also along the seaside. Although I was not a seafood lover, and I, by personality, do not have taste bud, I could still see that the food there was delicious, judging by my friends' reaction during our dinners. The people were friendly, especially the committees of Sabah Chess Association who tried to cater to all our needs during our stay there. The tournament was also smoothly organised, and the seven rounds agreed upon by the managers during the managerial meeting were thoroughly satisfying. All the cheerful experience can be read in PCNK website here.
Nonetheless, there were two incidents happened which I felt rightly forgettable. They involved cheating. Although I really like to distance myself from this topic after receiving some beatings for my previous post on the topic, I felt that without at least mentioning about them, these kind of immoral actions will go on unperturbed. Don't get me wrong, I really am not contesting the results, which I think were quite fair, but I am troubled by these two incidents which should not happen in the game of gentlemen.
First and foremost, a deal before a game should not be made whatsoever for whatever reason. Certainly not for the chance of winning certain prizes or best board medals. In this case, it lead to quick results and it killed the excitement and thrill of the game, completely. Ten minutes were all that they took to finish the games, and my word, I was down a little because of that. Granted, final games sometimes finished with draws, particularly in games which did not deter the outcome of the winning prizes, but for this one I knew that some deal were agreed beforehand.
Another inappropriate event happened to me. Even though I applaud the organiser's attempts to curb cheating, I saw that there was a certain loophole which was used in great effect for cheating purpose. Players were prohibited in certain parts of the venue when they were still playing, and they were to leave the playing hall if they had finished the game. This particular incident happened during the game, and all involved were still playing. It happened inside the playing hall, and it was subtle enough that nobody detected it except me. I noticed it when I made a gross mistake in my game, a member of the team appeared shocked, stood up and went to see a game played by another team. Then, my opponent stood up and slowly went towards the first member. Although the 'meeting' was brief, it was enough for at least recommending a move, or agreeing to a move.
REMEMBER! All these were taken from my observations and all that I had said were my judgments. I know that the two incidents mentioned might not be like I had observed. They might be the other way around and I would end up whining about nothing. I was careful enough by not mentioning any name, and only those involved know what I was talking about. If they are true, stop them at once! And if they are not like what I had mentioned, so be it. Nobody knows about it.