Variety

Zerodha’s Nikhil castled by chess platform after ‘fun fouls’ in charity game against Vishy

Our Bureau Mumbai | Updated on June 14, 2021

Nikhil Kamath, Co-founder and CIO, Zerodha

It is ridiculous that so many are thinking that I really beat Vishy in a chess game: Kamath tweeted

A game between Zerodha founder Nikhil Kamath and chess wiz Vishwanathan Anand, meant to be a fundraiser for combating Covid-19, ended badly with Kamath being accused of cheating.

Anand was playing virtual chess games simultaneously against various celebrities including Bollywood actor Aamir Khan and cricketer Yuzvendra Chahal as part of his effort to raise money for charity. While the others were defeated easily, the five-time World Chess Champion surprisingly lost to Kamath.

However, Chess.com, the online platform which was hosting the game, banned Kamath’s account citing violation of fair play rules.

“No account closure is made without hard, statistical evidence as well as a rigorous manual review. The Chess.com Fair Play Team consists of chess experts (including multiple titled players) and engineers who specialize in algorithms used to detect ‘anomalies’ and ‘patterns’ of non-human influence,” Daniel Rensch, Chief Chess Officer for Chess.com, said in a statement.

Kamath admitted to using help from in-game analysts and computers. “In my head, it was just a fun game we amateurs were playing against the greatest chess champ from India to raise funds for charity. But still gives no excuse for what I did. It was wrong and I sincerely apologize,” he tweeted.

“Got the opportunity thanks to Akshaypatra and their idea of raising funds for charity conducting a bunch of chess games with Vishy. It is ridiculous that so many are thinking that I really beat Vishy in a chess game, that is almost like me waking up and winning a 100mt race with Usain Bolt,” he said.

“I had help from people analysing the game, computers and the graciousness of Anand sir himself to treat the game as a learning experience. This was for fun and charity. In hindsight, it was quite silly as I didn’t realise all the confusion that can get caused due to this. Apologies,” he added.

Anand wasn’t too happy with Kamath’s antics. “Yesterday was a celebrity simul for people to raise money. It was a fun experience upholding the ethics of the game. I just played the position on the board and expected the same from everyone,” the chess champion tweeted. The Sunday night event managed to raise more than ₹10 lakh.

 

 

 

 

Published on June 14, 2021

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