We recently came across the following video on You Tube while researching ideas for new blog posts.
Is seems that back on January 22, 2008 Nigel Short was scheduled to play Ivan Cheparinov of Bulgaria at the famous Wijk aan Zee tournament. As the match was set to begin, Short attempts to make the traditional handshake and is twice refused by Cheparinov!
Nigel Short vs. Ivan Cheparinov:
After the incident, Short spoke to the tournament director and his opponent was disqualified from the match. Supposedly, Cheparinov was upset with Short about alleged comments he made about Cheparinov and the Bulgarian team in the past.
In a final twist, Cheparinov appealed the decision and was given a second opportunity to play the match if he provided a written apology:
I accept the decision of the Appeal Committee and on the name of chess, the chess fans and showing respect to the opinion of my colleagues would like to state the following:
I apologize officially to Mr. Short, to the Organizing Committee and the sponsors of Corus chess tournament.
I am ready to play the game today at 13’ 30 and will shake hands with Mr. Short according to the decision of the Appeal Committee.
It all sounds a bit surreal, but a full accounting of the incident can be found on the chessbase website at the following link (http://en.chessbase.com/post/short-cheparinov-handshake-game-ends-1-0)
Justice prevailed in the actual match, as Short was able to convert an endgame advantage to a win. After the match, the press interviewed him, and he provided this memorable quote:
‘There is a God. And he is not Bulgarian!’