Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Double Hand Desperado

There were eight grandmasters, twelve IMs and fourteen FIDE masters took part in the Hybercube Blitz Tournament on 21st March 2009 in Ultrecht. The average rating of the 130 participants was 2100. There was a controversy of how many hands can you use to play blitz chess.

This incident happen between Anish Giri against his opponent Vladimir Epishin when he uses two . Anish is currently the world's youngest grandmaster, having made a total of four valid norms and in possession of enough rating points to get his title officially the next time FIDE announces its awards.


Grandmaster Vladimir Epishin, Winner of 2005

Giri,Anish (2457) - Epishin,Vladimir (2587)
Hypercube Blitz Utrecht, 21.03.2009


In this position Black (on the move) realised that his previous ...e4 was a mistake and that he was losing a pawn. He quickly retreated his queen to b7 and e7 and a fairly chaotic situation arose, with both players in time trouble. Suddenly Black lost his queen to a knight fork and Anish Giri was winning. At this moment Epishin launched a protest: Anish had used both hands to execute a move.


A lot of people were watching the game and amazingly Robert Beekman actually captured the moment the move was executed. In the above picture Anish has the captured piece in his left hand, while executing the move of the capturing piece, his queen, with the right. He then went on to press the clock with his right hand.

Epishin called the arbiter while pressing on his side of the clock. Anish tried to press down on the lever, but did not have a chance against the burly Russian GM. So he stopped the clocks, which then showed 26 seconds for Black and eleven for White. The arbiter is summoned and decides that Giri should not have played with both hands and that his opponent should receive two minutes of additional time in compensation. Anish protests that he should get some extra time as well, since his clock ran down to eleven seconds while his opponent had kept his side pressed. He wanted 16 seconds, the arbiter proposed 14, Epishin was not happy with anything. In this moment Anish offered Epishin a draw, which his opponent immediately accepted.


An upset Epishin


Anish showed after the game.

The FIDE rules have nine words on the subject:

Article 4: The act of moving the pieces
          4.1 Each move must be made with one hand only.

Source: Chessbase

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