With an open letter published on BridgeWinners.com, the Russian star Anna Gulevich, partner of Andrey Gromov, stated the followings:
“At the end of June we got a good offer from a sponsor. A few days before the tournament, he substituted us with another pair. Andrey got in touch with Sjoert Brink, who founded the organization before CAT, who told him that we were investigated but this investigation found us clean. So far so good. Offline bridge activity in Russia started recovering in July and we didn’t need online tournaments anymore. So we didn’t participate in any tournaments during July and August.
At the beginning of September, Andrey called one of his friends regarding some non-bridge issues and his friend told him that we were included in the list of 29 pairs that CAT recommended against inviting. We were really surprised to hear that. Cheating is disrespectful to the game itself and to the other players. And we would never do this to our beloved game. But besides that we were surprised because no one contacted us on this matter during the two-month period.
We decided to contact CAT ourselves to find out if it were true. It really was. But neither did we get information on why this second investigation was initiated in the first place nor did we receive any evidence on the decision. We were told about issues with some suspicious boards, but we knew these wouldn’t have been so suspicious if the decision makers had known our system agreements. We have very detailed system notes which I sent to CAT on the first request AFTER they already had made their decision (11 files with over hundred pages). Were we asked about our agreements before? Were we asked about underlying logic? Neither. Another quotation from my favorite author would be appropriate here:
“It would be an unnecessary waste of time to search for evidence… Relative, approximate signs of guilt can be discovered by the investigator without evidence and without witnesses, without the need to leave the office…” — Alexander Solzhenitsyn, “The Gulag Archipelago”
Who are the judges? Were they unbiased? I don’t know exactly. CAT members change very frequently. I truly believe that investigators shouldn’t know names, or level of play, or the gender of those investigated. They should only (and thoroughly) assess bridge logic. It’s the only way to make an unbiased decision because no possible conflict of interest would be involved and no prejudices would affect an investigator’s opinion. And I feel some investigators’ driving motive could be not justice but rather putting more people in jail. To compensate for this conflict of interest, serious counterweight measures should be taken and I suggest anonymity of the investigated as one of them. As far as I know, along with not knowing much about our system agreements (only explanations from BBO), the Committee did know our names when analyzing. So there was not much relevant information in its possession, and what they did know was irrelevant and subject to bias.
We tried to receive evidence so we could shed some light on mysterious suspicious boards thus defending ourselves. But we were told that it was not CAT’s responsibility to prove one’s guilt, it was our responsibility to prove our innocence.
“‘We will not waste time proving to him that he is guilty. Let him show us that he had no hostile intentions.’” — Alexander Solzhenitsyn, “The Gulag Archipelago”
Not being happy with this “progressive” approach, which I feel is rooted in the Middle Ages, we had no choice but to provide the evidence. I took the task very seriously and started my own investigation”.
So, Anna Gulevich presented the results of her analysis and firmly rejected any allegation of cheating.
Read full Anna Gulevich’s post at BridgeWinners.com: click here »