Despite all the scandals that have rocked the world of elite chess in recent years, the rumors that a 19-year-old grandmaster used anal beads and artificial intelligence to beat the world’s best player are perhaps the most bizarre.
There has been speculation online that San Francisco-born Hans Niemann, a relative newcomer to the sport, put wireless vibrating anal beads into his body before his victorious match against the world’s No. 1 grandmaster, Magnus Carlsen, 31, last week.
Chess fans have speculated that an accomplice watching the match sent a coded message via the sex toy after being given the perfect move by an AI computer program.
This then caused the balls to vibrate at specific frequencies, so that the correct movements were rumored to be conveyed to Niemann during the match at the Sinquefield Cup in St. Louis, Missouri.
One fan tweeted: “Currently obsessed with the idea of Hans Niemann cheating at the Sinquefield Cup chess tournament using wireless anal beads that make him vibrate the right moves.”
Even Tesla CEO Elon Musk joined in, sharing a video on Twitter of an influencer discussing the rumor that Niemann used anal beads during the chess competition.
In a since-deleted tweet, Musk tweeted an edited version of a quote from philosopher Arthur Schopenhauer, writing: “Talent hits a target no one else can hit, genius hits a target no one can see (because it’s up your ass). ‘
There has been speculation online that San Francisco-born Hans Niemann (pictured), a relative newcomer to the sport, put wireless anal beads into his body before his victorious match against the world’s No. 1 grandmaster, Magnus Carlsen, 31, previous week
In a since-deleted tweet, Musk tweeted a modified version of a quote from philosopher Arthur Schopenhauer, in which he wrote: “Talent hits a target no one else can hit, genius hits a target no one can see (because it’s up your ass).”
Responding to rumors that he had used anal beads to cheat during the match, Niemann said: “If they want me to strip completely, I will.
‘I do not care. Because I know I’m clean. If you want me to play in a closed box with no electronic transmission, I don’t care. I’m here to win and that’s my goal no matter what.’
Niemann and Carlsen faced the $500,000 Sinquefield Cup in St. Louis, Missouri on September 4, but the emerging chess champion won the tournament only because Carlsen withdrew from the upcoming fourth round.
When Carlsen stepped out of the tournament without explanation, he posted a cryptic Tweet that read: “I have withdrawn from the tournament. I have always enjoyed playing in the @STLChessClub and hope to come back in the future.”
Carlsen had played 53 classic games without a loss and had won the cup twice in the past decade, but had never withdrawn from an ongoing event.
Along with the Tweet, he posted a cryptic video of football manager Jose Mourinho saying: “When I speak, I’m in big trouble.”
Mourinho spoke at a press conference after a game in which his team is said to have lost due to questionable decisions by officials.
Magnus Carlsen, 31, walked out of the $500,000 Sinquefield Cup after being defeated in the third round, sparking online speculation that he suspected foul play
“It must be embarrassing for the world champion to lose to an idiot like me,” Niemann said in an interview shortly after, according to Vice. ‘I feel sorry for him.’
Fans barely had time to react to the news when another chess titan, former child prodigy Hikaru Nakamura, came out and accused Niemann of receiving computer help – the kind of help banned in international chess tournaments.
Chess cheating is rare, but can be accomplished by hiding computers in shoes or jackets that indicate outcomes predicting the game and giving the player an advantage over their opponent.
“Magnus wouldn’t do this in a million years,” Nakamura said. “He just doesn’t. He is the ultimate competitor, he is a world champion.
“He wouldn’t do this unless he is really strongly convinced that Hans is cheating with a very strong conviction. I think he just thinks Hans is just cheating, straight up.’
After he was charged, it was revealed that Niemann had been caught cheating by the world’s most popular chess website, Chess.com.
After the revelations, Niemann admitted that he cheated in the past when he was 12 and 16, but insisted he’s now “gone clean.”
Niemann has accused Nakamura and others of trying to ruin his career.
Since the tournament, he has reached out to the media and defended himself on Twitter, hoping to clear his name.
“It’s no wonder I’m actually extremely annoying going through every possible transposition or line he could play in the Catalan [a move in chess],’ Hans explained after the match in an interview with chess24when asked about his technique.
But the dust still hasn’t settled, with some fans arguing that his win defied reason, while others defended his prowess, saying his skills speak for themselves.
“If you look at the pattern of my games, I’m clearly missing out on a lot of opportunities and it’s extremely human chess.”
Watch him play: Niemann often played chess full-time, coaching and streaming games on Twitch before competing in international tournaments
He said his cheating happened when he was a kid, before turning professional.
“I admit this, and I’m telling my truth, because I don’t want any misrepresentation,” he continued. “I’m proud of myself that I learned from that mistake and now I’ve given everything to chess. I’ve sacrificed everything for chess and I’m doing everything I can to improve.’
A player like Carlsen walking away after being defeated in the third round is an event unprecedented in the history of chess tournaments.
Chess.com has declined to invite Niemann to Chesscom Global Championship, a $1 million event that begins with online qualifiers and culminates in an 8-player final in Toronto, following the controversy.
“I met someone very high up in Chesscom during the Sinquefield Cup, had great words, but because of this match against Magnus, because of what he said, they have decided to remove me from the website completely,” he said.
Niemann became a chess grandmaster in 2020. Thirteen people have become grandmasters under the age of 14, including India’s Gukesh Dommaraju (12 years, 7 months, 17 days), Uzbekistan Javokhir Sindarov (12 years, 10 months, 5 days), and Indian Praggnanandhaa Rameshbabu (12 years, 10 months, 13 days).