What happened on Miami Beach? Magnus Carlsen accuses Hans Niemann of fraud

Hans Niemann have cheated more than he has publicly admitted and has done so in the recent past. That has now Magnus Carlsen in its much-anticipated statement communicated. Carlsen is using the word “fraud” openly for the first time, confirming suspicions – and raising new questions, most notably why he is not saying what his charges are based on.

Magnus Carlsen’s belief that Hans Niemann has been a cheat in the recent past includes the game that started it all: the Sinquefield Cup third round encounter in early September: “My impression was that he was neither tense nor full focused as he outplays me with the black stones in a way only a handful of people could.” This game contributed to his perspective, writes Carlsen – a surprise.

Carlsen . Niemann, Sinquefield Cup 2022, is now probably the most studied, most analyzed chess game in history. So far, no one has revealed themselves who see evidence of cheating based on this game. Ironically, this encounter, which was far from perfect on both sides, is now the only one that Carlsen explicitly mentions. For the world champion, the defeat against Niemann was the trigger to withdraw from the tournament. In general, Niemann’s increasing playing strength on the board is “unusual”, notes Carlsen.


Carlsen confirmed what recently Fabiano Caruana and Ian Nepomniachtchi have put on record: There had been rumblings among the participants of the Sinquefield Cup since it was clear that Hans Niemann would slip as a replacement for the prevented one Richard Rapport in the field. “I strongly considered retiring before the tournament even started,” writes Carlsen. “Ultimately, I decided to play.”

Unnoticed by the public, Hans Niemann must have come under the suspicion of Carlsen and probably other elite players just before the Sinquefield Cup. The Carlsen-Niemann relationship still seemed fine in early/mid-August during the “FTX Crypto Cup”. The two have completed joint PR appointments. Niemann’s performance on the (virtual) board cannot have given rise to suspicions: the 19-year-old finished last, Carlsen won the tournament.

Peace joy sand cake. Everything was fine on August 12: Magnus Carlsen and Hans Niemann were playing chess on the beach in Miami. What happened after that led to the current affair, which began when Magnus Carlsen missed the Sept. 5 game against Niemann in St. Louis. | via @sabopasha/Twitter

Between the Crypto Cup and the Sinquefield Cup, Carlsen must have revealed insights that have now led to this statement aimed at Niemann: “I don’t want to play against people who have repeatedly cheated in the past because I don’t know what they are into will do in the future.”

The relationship between Carlsen’s new business partner, chess.com, and Hans Niemann also apparently darkened rapidly in the days leading up to the Sinquefield Cup. In its emotional justification During the St. Louis competition, Niemann indicated that he had recently been in good conversations with chess.com executives. Following Carlsen’s withdrawal from the tournament, chess.com suspended Niemann’s account and eliminated him from his seven-figure Global Championship.

Niemann saw himself as the target of a coordinated attack – and asked: “Why was the CEO of chess.com telling me just recently that we look forward to seeing you and right after I beat Magnus they banned my account and shut me out What shoud that?”

During the second round of the Sinquefield Cup, when Hans Niemann beat Shakhriyar Mamedyarov, Carlsen looked critical.

Magnus Carlsen says he’d like to share more, possibly including what happened between him and Niemann in the days between the Crypto and Sinquefield Cups, but he can’t. “I need explicit permission from Niemann for this,” writes Carlsen – a new mystery. He accuses Niemann of cheating, but can’t say why he’s doing it without Niemann’s permission? To date, no observer has been able to decode this passage in the Carlsen letter. It is probably about avoiding a lawsuit by Niemann for defamation, it is said. But hasn’t there been a reason and a way to do it for a long time?

The chess.com boss has the obvious assumption that Carlsen saw cheating data from chess.com in the days leading up to the Sinquefield Cup Daniel Rensch on Reddit objected: Carlsen neither saw the (mythical, apparently quite long and filled with prominent names) list of caught cheating title holders on chess.com nor got an insight into the anti-cheating algorithm. Also on Reddit has chess.com CEO Eric Allebest announcedto name something concrete soon. So far, chess.com has also only hinted that more has happened, without quantifying or chronologically classifying it.

Until more comes, it remains true that Carlsen condemns Niemann on the basis of a hypothesis, not on the basis of facts. But he still doesn’t want to put that on the table. The world champion turns the matter with reference to a required approval from Niemann in such a way that, according to his interpretation, it is now Niemann’s turn.

In the search for meaningful irregularities in Niemann’s chess on the board, the scene is meanwhile focusing on an analysis of the French FM Yosha Iglesiasthe Niemann games from 2019 to 2022 scrutinized.

“The most incriminating evidence against Hans Niemann”?

Iglesias relies on a tool more than a decade old that has achieved amazing popularity since the release of her video on September 25th: ChessBase’s “Let’s Check” analysis, which analyzes a game using cloud-stored position evaluations and various Engines determined best moves screened. At the end of a Let’s Check analysis, each of the two players is assigned a percentage value that shows the extent to which their moves match what machines would have drawn.

A 100 percent value is extremely rare. ChessBase wrote on the occasion of the introduction of “Let’s Check” ten years ago: “The current record for the highest correlation (10/13/2011) is 98 percent in the game Feller-Sethuraman, Paris 2010. This precision is also reflected in Feller’s other games of that tournament and resulted in an Elo rating of 2859 which made him a clear winner.” Sebastien Fellerwho for one of the most famous cheating cases in chess stands, most likely cheated at his 98 percent.

Hans Niemann has achieved the unlikely Let’s Check 100 percent in a number of games in 2019-22 and, subject to further analysis, that looks like a rarity. When Magnus Carlsen published his statement on Monday evening, Hikaru Nakamura in one published immediately afterwards Video immediately examined the Carlsen-Niemann game from the Sinquefield Cup, which Carlsen highlighted, with a Let’s Check:

43 percent for Carlsen: Hikaru Nakamura examines Carlsen-Niemann with “Let’s Check”.

He didn’t find anything out of the ordinary, but rather confirmation that Carlsen played this game poorly by his standards – so badly, in fact, that Nakamura is willing to bet money that Carsen’s tournament games in the recent past won’t be worse.

The search and screening of Niemann games and results will continue. It will be exciting to see which of those directly involved makes the next move away from the boards. In all probability, Niemann will continue to play on the board from next week: The US championship, worth 250,000 dollars, starts on October 4th in St. Louis, 14 players, extremely strong.

As of now, Hans Moke Niemann is part of the field. Should he play, another non-game with Magnus Carlsen is prevented. The next tournament of the Carlsen tour from October 14-22 for which he would qualify would have to be missed by Niemann if he plays in Saint Louis (Vincent Keymer is probably playing along like he is now the sports show said).

The Bundesliga season opener of his SK Doppelbauer Tower Kiel with two home games on 22./23. He could just about make October. The US Championship ends on October 20th.

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