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|Thu May 12 2016 6:48PM | MsgID: 19025017|
Perhaps it was a reference to this incident involving Wesley So from last year:
Sadly, a great day of chess in the U.S. Championship was marred by an unfortunate incident that happened within the first hour of play on Friday. GM Wesley So was forfeited after his sixth move against GM Varuzhan Akobian, for writing personal notes on a separate sheet of paper during their encounter.
According to Chief Arbiter Tony Rich, Wesley was writing words of “general encouragement and advice” to himself on a piece of paper below his score sheet – a detail forbidden per the laws of FIDE. Later revealed was that So had been given two prior warnings for the infraction in earlier rounds, and Friday came as So’s third offense.
“I mentioned to Wesley twice earlier in the event that using notes or other sources of information is not allowed and strictly forbidden, according to the FIDE laws of chess," Rich said. "After the second warning, I notified Wesley that, if it happened again, I would be required to forfeit him. Unfortunately, that was the decision that I had to make: Wesley's round 9 game was forfeited.”
The incident sparked a heated discussion over Twitter with many chess players, journalists, organizers and arbiters weighing in to debate the merits of the decision. One thing was clear—this was an incredibly regrettable occurrence that blemished an otherwise fantastic tournament.
While the distraction was serious, the rest of the players in the U.S. Chess Championships were still in the middle of a crucial ninth round, and produced some fascinating chess. Tournament leader GM Hikaru Nakamura was a bit lucky to draw with GM Timur Gareev, though his main rival in the Championship race, GM Ray Robson, couldn’t find a win either, in a long game against GM Sam Sevian.
The results left Robson (6/9) still a half-point behind Nakamura (6.5/9) – with the two set to face off Saturday in a critical Round 10 matchup.