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Iran’s chess grandmaster snubs Israeli opponent

US Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-MN) (L) talks with Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) during a rally with fellow Democrats before voting on H.R. 1, or the People Act, on the East Steps of the US Capitol on March 08, 2019 in Washington, DC. (AFP photo)
Iranian chess grandmaster Ehsan Ghaem-Maghami

Iranian chess grandmaster Ehsan Ghaem-Maghami refuses to take on his Israeli opponent at the Schachfestival Basel 2016 Meister in Switzerland.

On Tuesday, the 32-year-old Iranian prevailed over his competitors in his contests at Hotel Landgasthof.

Ghaem-Maghami then refused to show up for a scheduled encounter against the Israeli opponent, Eliahu Shvidler, in the next round, and was subsequently excluded from the rest of the tournament.

He is the first international grandmaster in Iranian chess history, and the best Iranian chess player with regards to his ranking and rating since the age of 14.

In 2011, Ghaem-Maghami claimed the Guinness record for simultaneous chess games after facing more than 600 players in over 25 hours.

The Islamic Republic of Iran refuses to recognize the Tel Aviv regime and has long refused to engage in sports competitions against Israel.

The Schachfestival Basel 2016 Meister started in Riehen, Switzerland, on January 1 and wrapped up on January 5.

The sports event brought together 70 male and female chess players from across the globe.

On July 5, 2015, Ghaem-Maghami put on an impressive display of skill and stood on top of the podium at the 43rd Annual World Open in the United States.

In the eighth round of the blitz section of the competitions held at the Hyatt Regency Crystal City in Arlington, the 32-year-old Iranian national overcame American grandmaster Varuzhan Akobian.

Ghaem-Maghami, however, drew level with 25-year-old American chess player Aleksandr Lenderman in the ninth round.

The Iranian came first with the overall score of 7 out of 9, and shared the place with Ilya Yulievich Smirin of Israel, Azerbaijan’s Rauf Mamedov, Paraguayan chess player Axel Bachmann Schiavo, Lenderman from the US, Ukrainian grandmaster Illya Igorevich Nyzhnyk and Alexander Ipatov of Turkey.

Ghaem-Maghami secured 26 units to his international rating following the two contests.

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