Hans Niemann probably cheated in over 100 chess games, investigation concludes
In a latest bombshell surrounding chess, an investigation carried out by a sports website has concluded that teenage chess grandmaster, Hans Niemann has cheated in more than 100 online chess matches, which is far more than what was previously disclosed. The 72-page report, which was conducted by Chess.com and initially reviewed by the Wall Street Journal, has found that American chess grandmaster Hans Niemann “likely received illegal assistance in more than 100 online games”, as recently as in year 2020, that includes events with prize money at stake.
Hans Niemann, the 19 year old chess player who has made an extraordinary ascent into the world’s top 50 chess players over the past four years, came under amplified suspicions last month after the world chess champion Magnus Carlsen first suggested and then outright declared that the American player was winning through “illegitimate means”.
The world chess champion Magnus Carlsen had accused Niemann last month of cheating at the $350,000 Sinquefield Cup in St. Louis, Missouri. “I believe that Niemann has cheated more – and more recently – than he has publicly admitted,” the 31-year-old Norwegian said in a statement posted to Twitter. “His over the board progress has been unusual, and throughout our game in the Sinquefield Cup I had the impression that he wasn’t tense or even fully concentrating on the game in critical positions, while outplaying me as black in a way I think only a handful of players can do. This game contributed to changing my perspective.”
The report by Chess.com, which has “relied on cheating detection tools including a comparison of a player’s moves to those recommended by powerful supercomputers, has offered compelling data-driven evidence that dramatically contradicts those statements. The investigation made no conclusions regarding Niemann’s over-the-board games, but did flag contests from six of his stronger in-person events, stating they merit further investigation based on the data”, The Guardian explains. The full investigation has been made public on Tuesday evening, stating that Niemann has privately confessed to the cheating allegations. The website has said that Niemann was subsequently banned for a period of time from Chess.com, the world’s most popular chess platform. “While we don’t doubt that Hans is a talented player, we note that his results are statistically extraordinary,” the report said.