The world of elite chess has been engulfed in scandal after an embarrassing photo emerged of a ‘super’ grandmaster cheating while sitting on the toilet.
For years Igors Rausis stunned the world of chess by reaching the game’s top rank at an age when most players decline in ability.
But the International Chess Federation has suspended the 58-year-old Latvian-Czech player after he was “caught red-handed using his phone” at a tournament in France.
On Friday the organisation announced over twitter that all the evidence in the case of Mr Rausis player had been sent to an ethics committee.
The former Latvian champion, who won the grandmaster title in 1992, was heralded as an inspiration to older players as he climbed the ranks to become the oldest player in the Top 100, reaching number 40 in the rankings.
But his unprecedented rise also caused suspicion in the community as the game is heavily dominated by younger players.
In the last year, both British Grandmaster Danny Gormally and International Master Lawrence Trent expressed doubts about his performance.
Federation Director-General Emil Sutovsky wrote on Facebook that Rausis had long been under suspicion for cheating and that catching him was “merely the first shot” in a years-long battle.
Phones are banned during competitions and players often have to walk through metal detectors before they play.
Speaking to Chess.com, Mr Rausis admitted to the cheating.
“I simply lost my mind yesterday,” Rausis told the website. “I confirmed the fact of using my phone during the game by written [statement]. What could I say more?
“Yes, I was tired after the morning game and all the Facebook activity of accusers also have a known impact. At least what I committed yesterday is a good lesson, not for me – I played my last game of chess already.”