THE Irish Chess Union’s annual meeting at the end of the month will have huge Limerick interest, with Gabriel Mirza, who caught a student cheating in a major tournament recently, going for the job as PRO of the association.
Gardai were called to a chess tournament in Cork after one of Limerick’s best players, Mr Mirza, claimed he caught his opponent cheating “red handed” by using a computer tablet to obtaint moves from a chess engine.
After an investigation by the Chess Union, the student, who admitted the offence, was given a four month suspension from tournament play.
The Union themselves expressed disappointment with what they called the “excessively lenient” decision of the committee that investigated the incident.
The executive committee of the ICU discussed the disciplinary committee’s desision at a recent meeting and agreed on the following statement: “Since the disciplinary committee is independent we cannot alter its decision, but the ICU executive want to state that we regard this sanction as excessively lenient, and will put steps in place to ensure more appropriate sanctions in future. When FIDE introduce guidelines on such matters, the ICU will ensure that its procedures are in full accordance with them.”
Mr Mirza has a motion down for the meeting that anyone caught cheating be expelled from the ICU and banned from taking part in competitions for two years. This is bound to spark a major debate.
Mr Mirza teaches chess in Limerick and his daughter Diana was crowned European Union Girls champion under 13 recently and met President Higgins at Aras an Uachtarain.