Georgian Chess player out of competition after toilet phone use
14 April, 2015
Georgian Chess player out of competition after toilet phone use
Gaioz Nigalidze could face a three-year ban if the complaint against him is upheld , BBC informs.

The reigning Georgian national champion was playing Armenian Tigran Petrosian in the sixth round at the Dubai Open.

Petrosian alerted officials after noticing that his opponent was visiting the bathroom at regular intervals.

Nigalidze was apparently using the same cubicle each time for ten minutes or more, arous
ing his rival's suspicions.

When the player emerged from the toilet, officials discovered a smartphone wrapped in toilet tissue and buried in the bin.

"He denied it was his, but it was logged into his Facebook page and there was a chess program running on it, showing his positions," the tournament director Yahya Mohamed Saleh told the BBC from Dubai.

The first prize up for grabs at the competition was $12,000 (£8,000).

Gaioz Nigalidze did not respond to an email request for comment, BBC reports.

The Georgian Chess Federation called the incident "very bad," but said it was waiting to hear the player's side of the story before passing judgement.
"He is very talented," Sofiya Nikoladze told the BBC.

"He's a very nice young man and I would never have thought he could do such a thing," she said of the 26 year old, who is ranked 400th in the world.

geotv.ge

It is the first case of a grandmaster being referred to the International Chess Federation (FIDE) since it established an Anti-Cheating Commission last year.

Describing the problem in chess as "high-tech doping," officials say they have increased their efforts to stamp it out.

As computers have become more discreet and more powerful, FIDE has begun deploying metal detectors, blocking devices and carrying out random inspections of players to prevent their use at competitions.

In 2008, before smartphones became widespread, an Iranian player was banned from the Dubai Open for taking tips via text message.

Today, cheating is relatively rare at the top level but lesser players have been known to hide electronic devices in their socks and shoes, and even inside their ears.
As a result, arbiters are now permitted to search competitors. Failure to comply can lead to expulsion.

Should it confirm that Gaioz Nigalidze was using a computer to help his game in Dubai, the Georgian will be penalised with a lengthy ban from chess.

That would make the decision to cheat the worst move of his career, BBC reports.
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