Topalov erneuert Betrugsvorwürfe gegen Kramnik

von ChessBase
16.12.2006 – In einem Interview mit der spanischen Tageszeitung ABC hat Veselin Topalov seine Betrugsvorwürfe gegen Kramnik erneuert. Der ganze Wettkampf in Elista hätte unter starker Anspannung stattgefunden. Das Topalov-Team sei von Anfang an bedroht worden. Kramnik hätte sich durch seine häufigen Besuche der Toilette verdächtig gemacht. Später habe man dort ein Netzwerkkabel gefunden, so Topalov. Man habe dies aber nicht veröffentlicht, sonst wäre der Wettkampf womöglich abgebrochen worden und das Preisgeld wäre verloren gewesen. Außerdem hätte es Drohungen gegeben. Kramnik hätte vermutlich Hilfe vom KGB-Leuten bekommen, nicht von Profispielern, die ihm die Computerzüge vorgesagt hätten. Auch Kramniks Team sei nicht eingeweiht gewesen, glaubt Topalov. Nach dem Protest hätte man die Cheating-Methoden verbessert. Auch in den Schnellschachpartien des Stichkampfes hätte Kramnik gecheatet, was sich an seinem Verhalten gezeigt hätte. Das im Bad gefundene Kabel sei für ihn der Beweis, das Kramnik betrogen hätte, so Topalov. Original-Interview bei ABC...Interview...

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Tell me about the blindfold duel.

I arrived very relaxed and the games were spectacular. The quality was very high.

How were your beginnings in Spain?

It was a very romantic period. Silvio Danailov and I came here because there were more tournaments. [Don't be fooled by the literal "a romantic period," unless you think Morphy and Anderssen were, umm, castling on the opposite side back in that romantic era. -Mig]

Were you already thinking about becoming champion?

When you win the under-14 world championship you know you've got talent, but I didn't have such aspirations.

You could say you were a champion who came out of the streets.

Yes, I have a street-fighting style. I spent a year playing in opens and we walked all over Spain.

We first met in 1994, in Alcobendas, and success hasn't changed you.

That's the benefit of starting at the bottom.

How was the encounter with Kramnik?

Very tense, although objectively speaking I dominated the majority of it.

What happened before the fifth game?

We got the videos of what Kramnik was doing between every move. He was going to the bathroom many times and his behavior was very suspicious.

They accuse you of trying to disturb him because he was winning.

We never wanted to stop the match. There were clear indications of cheating. You look at that tape and it puts the fear into you. It's not just how many times he went to the bathroom, but how he went. Many times he came out, came to the board and moved instantly.

He alleges health problems.

That's a lie. I drank more than he did and didn't go to the bathroom so often. We protested, but the committee, which had sided with us, was fired.

They say it's inconceivable that the rival team had access to private video.

They also saw my video. They followed my every step and everyone who was with me. And if he's not doing anything wrong, what's the problem?

Illescas said you exaggerated, and lied, about the number of times Kramnik went to the bathroom.

I don't know how many times he went. My team only saw the tapes once and then they disappeared.

Maybe they were based on approximations.

When they inspected the bathrooms they found a network cable hidden in the stucco ceiling.

That never came out.

We kept it quiet for many reasons.

Was it a mistake to keep it quiet?

We couldn't say anything. It was a very tense situation. If we announced it the match would have been cancelled and I wanted to play and to win the money. What's more, there were threats.

Made by whom?

Anonymous at the start, but they closed the airport. It's easy to talk here, but when you're in Russia you think about how you're going to get out. Walking? And forget about the money of course. So we shut up and continued the match.

Did you notice anything at the board?

There you're focused. The problem for Illescas is that he didn't know what was going on either because Kramnik didn't say anything to anyone on his team.

So he got outside help?

Yes. They were Russians, but not from the chess world.

So his team is innocent.

I think so. They aren't involved; that's why they doubt and deny everything.

Did he get help from the KGB?

The trick is that no professional [player] was implicated and those who told him the moves were fans or from the KGB. If you gave Illescas that job they'd crush me.

Have you spoken with Kramnik?

The Kremlin will never admit they poisoned that Russian spy, which seems obvious, or that Kramnik cheated.

Did you feel in physical danger?

Yes, and I don't think I'll ever go back there.

Let's move on to the rematch. You yourself think it's unlikely to be played.

The problem is that Kramnik wants to keep the title without defending it over the board. He always wants some privilege. I don't even think he will play in Mexico.

In Kalmykia there was anti-doping control, yes?

They gave us one test, but the laboratory was in Moscow.

What do you think of President Ilyumzhinov?

He's a businessman and he simply needed to have a Russian champion. It's nothing personal. He got the order.

Do you believe that Kramnik continued cheating after the scandal was unleashed?

Personally I think yes, and that the new method was better.

Also in the tiebreak games?

There they had a foolproof system. In the fourth game, when he already had me beat, Kramnik made a move that would only occur to a computer. Later he had the right to a rest day, but even though he was sick he didn't take it. If you're going to have moves passed to you, best to play as soon as possible. But they did it better than the shoddy job with the cables.

If that's all true, what is going to happen in the future when computers are even stronger?

If things continue this way, with the technology the Russians have, Kramnik will be invincible in a match.

There's no way to stop it?

Before the tiebreak, when a member of my team checked him..

.. for electronics?

Yes, with a scanner. The guy was visibly shaking. I think he had something on his body and he was worried it would be discovered. I know that's my personal opinion, which is just a guess. The definitive proof for me is the cable.

But in the second game you wiped him off the board, although later you failed to finish him off.

It was precisely because he played like a computer. He kept capturing pieces very quickly, with total calm, when my attack was very dangerous. I couldn't believe it. If you look at the position with a computer it loves black, although it's lost, until it's too late. How could he be so confident?

Before the match did you suspect anything like this?

We had it in mind and we thought, well, in the worst case we'll get the money. The problem was that we found out. If you don't discover it you just play chess. But if you find out it wrecks you. You can't sleep and you spin yourself in circles.






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