In a surprising turn of events, Yan Chenglong, the recently crowned “Xiangqi King” after winning a major tournament in the Hainan Province, faced controversy and subsequent consequences following an unconventional celebration.
Yan Chenglong’s triumph outplayed amateur Xiangqi players to claim the championship title and a prize of 100,000 yuan, was marred by an unusual incident the next morning. Reportedly, after a night of revelry, hotel staff found Chenglong had defecated in the bathtub, raising questions about his behavior throughout the competition.
Cheating allegations and the “Anal Bead” controversy
Accusations surfaced on Chinese social media that Chenglong might have employed a unique method of cheating during the tournament. Claims suggested that he used an “anal massaging device” to share data about the chessboard with a distant computer, influencing his strategic moves. Shockingly, the device was purportedly discovered in the aftermath of his unorthodox celebration.
Chenglong vehemently denied the cheating allegations, attributing his actions to a bout of diarrhea caused by alcohol consumption the night before. He insisted that his long-standing experience in high-level chess, spanning over 40 years, stood as evidence of his integrity. Chenglong explained that, in the urgency of the moment, he opted for the bathtub as a makeshift solution.
Chinese Xiangqi Association’s response
The Chinese Xiangqi Association (CXA), the governing body overseeing chess competitions in the country, responded to the allegations against Chenglong. Despite acknowledging the damage caused to hotel property and the negative impact on the competition, the CXA stated that there was insufficient evidence to conclusively prove the cheating accusations. However, they took a decisive stance against Chenglong’s behavior.
Stripping of title and punitive measures
On December 25, the CXA officially stripped Chenglong of his championship title, imposing significant repercussions for his actions. In addition to forfeiture of an undisclosed portion of his prize money, Chenglong received a one-year ban from participating in any Chinese chess competitions. The governing body characterized his actions as damaging to public order, good morals, and the overall reputation of Xiangqi.
Interestingly, this incident is not the first time anal beads have been linked to a chess cheating scandal. In the United States, Grandmaster Hans Niemann faced accusations of using a rectal insertable to gain an advantage against World Champion Magnus Carlsen in September 2022. Niemann denied the allegations, leading to a lawsuit that concluded in August 2023.
Unusual tactics and serious consequences
The controversy surrounding Yan Chenglong’s victory celebration and subsequent cheating allegations has not only raised eyebrows within the chess community but has also prompted serious consequences from the governing body. The incident serves as a reminder of the lengths some individuals may go to secure a win, tarnishing the spirit of fair play in the process.
Chenglong’s victory initially brought him acclaim as the “Xiangqi King.” His unorthodox celebration and the subsequent allegations have resulted in the loss of his title, financial penalties, and a suspension from competitive play. The chess world, both in China and internationally, remains vigilant against any attempts to compromise the integrity of the game.