Friday, April 24, 2015

Pestaño: Lotis Key and other chess dramas

 Friday, April 24, 2015
LOTIS Key is a former professional film and theater actress who starred in almost 90 major films and was once romantically linked with the late Dolphy. She is the author of two novels, “The Song Of The Tree” and “A Thing Devoted.” She is married to Bambi Kabigting, a former basketball player of the Ateneo de Manila University Blue Eagles and Crispa Redmanizers.
She has been in the limelight lately as the “foster” mother of chess sensation Wesley So and became controversial during the just-concluded US Championship, which I featured last week. Here is a letter from her daughter in Facebook. The daughter describes herself as Wesley`s best friend.
“My mother, Lotis Key-Kabigting has given up her entire life to support Wesley, and help him achieve his dreams of becoming world Champion.
She has devoted endless love, time, energy and money to aid him in becoming a better person and chess player.
When my mother says she’s going to do something, she gives everything and holds nothing back. She has plunged head-on into this raging river, and in the process, has suffered much in the way of persecution from people who wish they could be her and do the amazing things she does.
She has given up all the comforts of home as she has almost no time now to spend at the house with her family, beloved animals, or attend to her businesses. She has no time for friends, socializing, or personal vacations. She has put everything on hold for Wesley.
She has committed herself to travel with Wesley to every single tournament he has this year so that he won’t be alone, will be protected, and can focus on nothing but chess. You cannot imagine her sacrifice and dedication.
She has endured the threats and insults hurled at her with grace, and even in the face of extreme adversity, continues to move ahead with steadfastness and courage.
She continues to shield and protect those whom she loves because she is a warrior. Well Mom, I want everyone to know that I am here and I will always fight for you.
She is the most selfless person I know, and always gives a hundred percent to help anyone and everyone become the best they can be.
No one can hold a candle to her. I love you Mom
.--Your daughter, Abigail Grace Key
The chess world was full of other dramas last week with news of Wesley So’s disqualification in the ninth round of the US Chess Championship and Gaioz Nigalidze getting caught cheating at the Dubai Open.
The US Championship was highly successful but it was Wesley So’s sensational forfeit that took most of the attention. The reason was not only controversial but absurd.
In a stunning decision, the arbiter Tony Rich forfeited Wesley So when it was discovered that So was writing notes to himself during the game,
At first, it seemed like an abuse of power by a rules-obsessed referee. Wesley wrote a reminder to himself on a piece of paper: “Double-check, triple-check and use your time.” It turned out that he had been warned twice already not to do it. Varuzhan Akobian complained to the arbiter who then forfeited Wesley
“So offended no one nor did he disrespect his opponent; he caused no disturbance, nor did he cheat. So’s actions were not designed to give him anything other than peace of mind and a calm spirit.” Rich could have penalized So by just deducting time for his clock,
Cheating at chess tournaments has become easier with technology.
GM Gaioz Nigalidze was caught cheating in the Dubai Open tournament. He was using a smart phone that he’d hidden in the bathroom. He was expelled from the tournament and faces a three to 15-year ban.
The motivation in Dubai is obvious. The winner gets $12,000.

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