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“I cannot particularly speak on that” Magnus Carlsen on Hans Niemann

Magnus Carlsen is currently thriving at the Julius Baer Generation Cup Prelims but his resignation on move 2 against Niemann a couple of days ago overshadowed all success. On the final day Magnus decided to break his silence! But he actually say anything?!

Photo: Chess24 Oslo broadcast

First he [Carlsen] withdraws from the Sinquefield Cup after losing against Hans Niemann. The he tweets, indicating that there is something serious going on, but he can’t speak about it, while silently encouraging the cheating rumours. Then he resigns on move 2 against Niemann at the Julius Baer Generation Cup without saying a word afterwards. And yesterday the World Champion, after finishing the Prelims stage of the Cup with 9 full points ahead of the 2nd place, decided to comment, but without commenting!

Here is his whole interview, as presented by chess.24.

What was the reason you withdrew from the Niemann game?

“Unfortunately, I cannot particularly speak on that but people can draw their own conclusions and they certainly have. I have to say I’m very impressed by Niemann’s play and I think his mentor Maxim Dlugy must be doing a great job.”

Can you confirm whether or not you resigned on Monday due to suspecting Niemann of cheating?

“I will not comment on that.”

It’s been a dramatic time, how are you doing in all this?

“I’m OK, just living my life and trying to do well in the tournament. People who know me and followed, for instance, the tournament in Zagreb in 2019 know that I can shut things out.”

How have you been able to stay focused?

“I’m happy to play chess and that usually makes me happy. As I said, I have a lot of experience and generally it makes me... the score in the preliminaries is nice but now I’m facing a very strong opponent already in the quarters, so it doesn’t necessarily mean anything at this minute.”

Will you make a comment in the future to clarify events?

“I hope to say a little bit more after the tournament.”

Is cheating in general a problem in chess?

“I think individual people will answer the question differently depending on their own experiences. I think regardless of whether it’s a massive problem or not, it’s I think fairly easy to cheat and, on a general basis, I think that cheaters in the future should not be taken lightly either online or over the board.”

Do you have a message for youngsters thinking about cheating?

“I understand it’s tempting but, yeah, I wouldn’t recommend it.”

Are FIDE and organisers doing enough?

“It’s hard to say really. I will probably say a bit more after the tournament.”

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