Friday, December 28, 2012

Cheating accusation in Croatia

Bulgarian chess player strip searched after being accused of cheating in Croatian tournament
Croatian Times

Organisers of an international chess tournament in Zadar, Croatia, strip searched an unranked Bulgarian chess player after he easily beat their local grand master.

Borislav Ivanov was stripped and had his clothing searched after judges decided he must have a hidden aid telling him what moves to make after he beat much better ranked chess players.

There were 36 competitors at the tournament, including 16 grand-masters, 5 international masters, and 10 FIDE masters. According to the rating, the Bulgarian without any chess ranking was supposed to be an easy rival but surprisingly started winning game after a game.

In the first round he managed to defeat Croatian masters Bojan Kurajica, Robert Zelcic and Zdenko Kozul.

"After the eighth round there were suspicions that Ivanov has some electronic tools to help him and in my capacity of a judge I decided to make a move in line with the FIDE rules," Stanislav Maroja, the chairperson of the chess union in Zadar District told daily newspaper Jutarnji List.

But nothing was found on Ivanov, a 26-year-old computer programmer.  

"Technologies are so developed now that theoretically, since the games were aired live, Ivanov’s friends in the neighbouring room, from Sofia, or even from the Antarctic, could have sent him hints for his moves through chips, which could have been placed under the skin, in the ear, or in the teeth," one of the tournament participants told Jutarnji List.



Big Alex said...

C´mon the guy has just studied hard ;-)

Big Alex said...

C´mon the guy had just studied hard ;-)

Mike Magnan said...

;;;could have sent him hints for his moves through chips, which could have been placed under the skin, in the ear, or in the teeth,'s soooooooo lame! ..What is this?? Salem witchhunts?

IF he cheated...I'm pretty sure that wasn't how..haha...If this is really how dense these people Perhaps he's having the tournament of his life..perhaps he's cheating.. ..of course they won't prove anything...with that sort of irrational reasoning..haha..but it was good for a laugh to read such stupiditiy.

Buster Hymen said...

Yeh, studied hard on how to cheat

Anonymous said...

In Bulgaria there are many talented players unranked.
Moreover the bloke was searched and nothing found.
The organizers should apologize.

Ivan Smilianov said...

I know this boy and he is really good! He can beat a GM for breakfast.

Ivan Smilianov said...

This young man won the Balkan amateur championship this year. He has ELO 2227 and he is able to beat many GMs.
You better proof your information before writing. And in Croatia ... They should apologize.

Anonymous said...

That is pure nonsense :-) The boy is really good! Just if you have another profession, you do not have the time to go to many tournaments and thus remain low-rated. Which us not an obstacle to win against "professionals" :-) It is not pleasant for them, even offensive, but...still true :-) My son is a kid with only 1700 ELO, but wins (more and more often) against players with 2000-2200. (His rating goes rapidly up, but still remains under-rated) I have seen the same from some of them, thanks god he is just a kid :-) Such people are not to admire, even if they are GMs! They should apologize!

Anonymous said...

Winning 6/9 points with those opponents is probability of about 1/2000 (i.e. 0.05%):

This, however, assumes that his rating of 2227 actually reflects his strength.

Borislav Spassov said...

Please, never share unconfirmed information! The cited newspaper article claims false facts. The goal is to manipulate chess community with these untrue hints, misleading us towards their irrational conclusions!

First of all, Ivanov is not unranked - his ELO was 2227 prior to this tournament, although his strength far exceeds this number. He won several strong tournaments the past several years, not only in Bulgaria, but also Croatia (again), Poland, Spain. He is known to have previously won against titled Bulgarian players, rated 2400+. Second of all - he is NOT a computer programmer! Third and less important - he is from the provincial city of Blagoevgrad, not Sofia, where it is hard to imagine he operates with such stealth James Bond / alien technologies they suppose, that would cost far more than the miserable prize of their so called tournament!

If I may ask - where FIDE rules imply to strip a player for any reason?! If so, why hasn't Kramnik been stripped in Elista? Croatian so called "star GMs" are angry to lose in such a manner, after underestimating his strength, and this only shows their mental weakness, ill-behavior, as well as chess skills! Croatian journalists and arbiters too! This is not hard to imagine - read History and remember how they behaved with the Bosniaks, together with the Serbs during the 90s! Such actions must be a distinguishing feature in their national character!

JCigan said...

Haven't we learned from the Lance Armstrong case? Even if no evidence of a specific cheating method or device is found, Ivanov's wins from the tournament are indistinguishable from computer play. Complete with bizarre moves early in the game to get the opponent out of book, shuffling the pieces around for upwards of 50 moves in dead equal / drawn positions, a knack for finding extraordinarily difficult tactical resources... you can find the games at's article on this scandal. The player consented to be searched, so his rights weren't violated. And his performance was strikingly weaker after he had been searched. Take a look at his game with lists colors incorrectly; Ivanov had the White pieces. Looks like unmistakable chess engine-assisted play.

On top of this, all the players at the tournament seemed in agreement that Ivanov's play was suspicious. Where there's smoke, there's fire. I cannot look at his first several games and believe that a player rated 2200 played them. In fact, I do not even think a player rated 2800 would have been able to play them.

Anonymous said...

New video from Valeri Lilov on Zadar (Borislav Ivanov's) cheating case: