Are we allowed to gossip anymore?
As we all know RGF disqualified Vjacheslav Shpakovskij (who is European U12 champion) for four years for cheating in an online RGF tournament. He finished 5-1 losing to 4d and winning against 4d, 3d, 3d, 5d, 4k.
Four years is quite a lot for a player with great potential. If you remember last public case for pandanet tournament, a player was disqualified for only two years (that ban already ran out). If you remember Korean pro cheating case, the ban was only for one year.
And since the official communication from RGF was rather uninformative, some strong opinions were formed, which is what’s interesting in the first place.
Ilya Shikshin cited lack of procedures and written regulations for cases of cheating and called the decision not legitimate. It appears in his view since the boy is one of the top players in his age category, it’s important not to lose his talent and support his growth. And even one year ban hinders progress quite a bit at that age, and perhaps it’s better to ban his only from specific tournaments (online/Russian championships) for one-two years.
Alexander Dinershteyn suggested one year at most but with lifetime ban from online tournaments without referee supervision. And four years is equivalent to life ban in practice.
Many people considered punishment too harsh.
Guzel Surma broke from the herd and said that cheaters should be punished harshly.
I think it’s interesting how fighting for clean sport clashes with not wanting to lose a valuable player.
Some interesting bits of information came up too. First of all, it is said that parents were offered one year plea deal but refused (and got even more in the end, this is like real justice system). Also, apparently during pandemic there have been several small cases that were solved quietly, with just a suspension for a few tournaments, which makes this one seem unfair in comparison. But all of it rumors. Hopefully RGF will further develop procedures that work.
By the way, I couldn’t help but dig out the games in question but I’m too dumb for them.
I also read some chess cheating cases, it all seems ended with 1-2 years of ban, like 3 tops.