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Old July 19th 11, 04:14 PM posted to rec.games.chess.misc
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Default Incredible 12 month chess winning streak!

On Jul 19, 9:41*pm, MikeMurray wrote:

I'm not saying it's cheating to target events where rating improvement
is more likely, but it's naive to think two ratings of "x" have
necessarily measured the same performance.


Thanks for your insights MM. But as I pointed out, in lieu of the
fact that Zelner's results improved from a zig-zag 'random' pattern
before late 2003 to a smooth "moon shot" afterwards, you have to
conclude, as None says, that it's entirely possible that the fix is in
and Zelner is cheating.

Remember he owns some sort of computer chess paraphernalia shop, and
it's conceivable that he rigged a system, using his wife perhaps as
the assistant, to feed him moves from Rybka. Hence his ability to
always win.

RL
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Old July 19th 11, 06:17 PM posted to rec.games.chess.misc
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Default Incredible 12 month chess winning streak!

On Tue, 19 Jul 2011 08:14:24 -0700 (PDT), raylopez99
wrote:

On Jul 19, 9:41*pm, MikeMurray wrote:


I'm not saying it's cheating to target events where rating improvement
is more likely, but it's naive to think two ratings of "x" have
necessarily measured the same performance.


Thanks for your insights MM. But as I pointed out, in lieu of the
fact that Zelner's results improved from a zig-zag 'random' pattern
before late 2003 to a smooth "moon shot" afterwards, you have to
conclude, as None says, that it's entirely possible that the fix is in
and Zelner is cheating.


Remember he owns some sort of computer chess paraphernalia shop, and
it's conceivable that he rigged a system, using his wife perhaps as
the assistant, to feed him moves from Rybka. Hence his ability to
always win.


RL


I agree that the record is odd. In the last year, a lot of quads,
against a relatively small pool of entrants, many games against what
appear to be family members.

But it's also possible he's a "Mister Consistent" who started working
more diligently on his game in 2003.

His streak and rating would be more impressive if he played in some
strong events outside his regional comfort zone.
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Old July 20th 11, 05:46 AM posted to rec.games.chess.misc
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Default Incredible 12 month chess winning streak!

On Jul 19, 12:17*pm, MikeMurray wrote:
On Tue, 19 Jul 2011 08:14:24 -0700 (PDT), raylopez99

wrote:
On Jul 19, 9:41 pm, MikeMurray wrote:
I'm not saying it's cheating to target events where rating improvement
is more likely, but it's naive to think two ratings of "x" have
necessarily measured the same performance.

Thanks for your insights MM. *But as I pointed out, in lieu of the
fact that Zelner's results improved from a zig-zag 'random' pattern
before late 2003 to a smooth "moon shot" afterwards, you have to
conclude, as None says, that it's entirely possible that the fix is in
and Zelner is cheating.
Remember he owns some sort of computer chess paraphernalia shop, and
it's conceivable that he rigged a system, using his wife perhaps as
the assistant, to feed him moves from Rybka. *Hence his ability to
always win.
RL


I agree that the record is odd. *In the last year, a lot of quads,
against a relatively small pool of entrants, many games against what
appear to be family members.

But it's also possible he's a "Mister Consistent" who started working
more diligently on his game in 2003. *

His streak and rating would be more impressive if he played in some
strong events outside his regional comfort zone.


To suggest that Mr. Zelner would somehow cheat is ignorant. He owns
the chess club. It's a labor of love. It loses money every year. If he
announces a tournament, he will hold it. If there aren't enough
players, his family will participate. I'm glad for his streak, 19
Experts and 4 Masters have lost to him in the last 12 months. That's
an accomplishment, for sure.
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Old July 20th 11, 03:55 PM posted to rec.games.chess.misc
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On Tue, 19 Jul 2011 21:46:18 -0700 (PDT), Detectorist
wrote:


His streak and rating would be more impressive if he played in some
strong events outside his regional comfort zone.


19 Experts and 4 Masters have lost to him in the last 12 months.
That's an accomplishment, for sure.


It *is* an accomplishment, but perhaps not as striking as it might
seem at first glance. It's a solid, consistent performance that's
gained him 83 rating points so far this year. But, according to the
USCF statistics, he's not played a single player in what I'd call his
peer group.

He's currently rated 2423.

In the last 12 months, he's scored 98-1 against players rated under
1900. He's scored 30-0 against players rated under 2100. He's scored
6-0 against players rated under 2300. Remarkable consistency. I'm
amazed he hasn't dropped a few games through losing focus,
carelessness or over-confidence.

But he's not played anybody within 150 points of his current rating,
and most of his Expert/Master level opposition seem to be against two
individuals (Boas and Mandelkern).

Based on his current rating, I would consider his peer group to be
players rated 2300 and above. His lifetime record
(http://main.uschess.org/datapage/gam...memid=12400396)
against such players is 2 wins, 8 draws, 53 losses. Now, it's
somewhat unfair to compare a lifetime record against a winning streak
in the last 12 months, but it tells me he has yet to demonstrate he
could hold a 2400-plus rating against opposition 2300 and above.

As I've said before, I'm not accusing him of cheating. But a number
of players involved in the *business* of chess (training,
administration, etc.) have manipulated ratings to enhance credibility,
which may explain much of the skepticism evidenced in this newsgroup.



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Old July 20th 11, 04:47 PM posted to rec.games.chess.misc
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Default Incredible 12 month chess winning streak!

On Jul 20, 9:55*am, MikeMurray wrote:
On Tue, 19 Jul 2011 21:46:18 -0700 (PDT), Detectorist

wrote:
His streak and rating would be more impressive if he played in some
strong events outside his regional comfort zone.

19 Experts and 4 Masters have lost to him in the last 12 months.
That's an accomplishment, for sure.


It *is* an accomplishment, but perhaps not as striking as it might
seem at first glance. *It's a solid, consistent performance that's
gained him 83 rating points so far this year. *But, according to the
USCF statistics, he's not played a single player in what I'd call his
peer group.

He's currently rated 2423.

In the last 12 months, he's scored 98-1 against players rated under
1900. *He's scored 30-0 against players rated under 2100. *He's scored
6-0 against players rated under 2300. *Remarkable consistency. *I'm
amazed he hasn't dropped a few games through losing focus,
carelessness or over-confidence.

But he's not played anybody within 150 points of his current rating,
and most of his Expert/Master level opposition seem to be against two
individuals (Boas and Mandelkern). *

Based on his current rating, I would consider his peer group to be
players rated 2300 and above. *His lifetime record
(http://main.uschess.org/datapage/gam...memid=12400396)
against such players is 2 wins, 8 draws, 53 losses. *Now, it's
somewhat unfair to compare a lifetime record against a winning streak
in the last 12 months, but it tells me he has yet to demonstrate he
could hold a 2400-plus rating against opposition 2300 and above.

As I've said before, I'm not accusing him of cheating. *But a number
of players involved in the *business* of chess (training,
administration, etc.) have manipulated ratings to enhance credibility,
which may explain *much of the skepticism evidenced in this newsgroup.


My post was mainly on his incredible run. His rating, at least to me,
is not very important. People will try to hate on other's
accomplishments, no matter what.


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Old July 20th 11, 05:02 PM posted to rec.games.chess.misc
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Default Incredible 12 month chess winning streak!

On Jul 20, 4:47*pm, Detectorist wrote:

My post was mainly on his incredible run. His rating, at least to me,
is not very important. People will try to hate on other's
accomplishments, no matter what...


Exactly. There are plenty of games throughout chess history where the
weaker player won (or drew) - but AZ has maintained a tremendous
concentration!
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Old July 20th 11, 05:33 PM posted to rec.games.chess.misc
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Default Incredible 12 month chess winning streak!

On Wed, 20 Jul 2011 08:47:56 -0700 (PDT), Detectorist
wrote:

My post was mainly on his incredible run. His rating, at least to me,
is not very important. People will try to hate on other's
accomplishments, no matter what.


When posting to a newsgroup, one must expect not only admiration but
*discussion*, and I think the discussion resulting from your post
sheds some light on the Elo rating system.

If the rating wasn't important, why emphasize that his results
included Masters and Experts?

At any rate, I see no evidence of "hate" in the discussion -- some
suspicion, yes, but not hatred.
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Old July 20th 11, 05:55 PM posted to rec.games.chess.misc
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Default Incredible 12 month chess winning streak!

On Jul 20, 12:02*pm, Offramp wrote:
On Jul 20, 4:47*pm, Detectorist wrote:

My post was mainly on his incredible run. His rating, at least to me,
is not very important. People will try to hate on other's
accomplishments, no matter what...


Exactly. There are plenty of games throughout chess history where the
weaker player won (or drew) - but AZ has maintained a tremendous
concentration!


Yes, I'm reminded of Kevin Bachler and how he was caught manipulating
his and his students rating. Likewise Jude Acer. You would think in 99
games he would have at least two or three where he made game losing
blunder.
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Old July 20th 11, 05:57 PM posted to rec.games.chess.misc
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Default Incredible 12 month chess winning streak!

On Jul 20, 12:33*pm, MikeMurray wrote:
On Wed, 20 Jul 2011 08:47:56 -0700 (PDT), Detectorist

wrote:
My post was mainly on his incredible run. His rating, at least to me,
is not very important. People will try to hate on other's
accomplishments, no matter what.


When posting to a newsgroup, one must expect not only admiration but
*discussion*, and I think the discussion resulting from your post
sheds some light on the Elo rating system.

If the rating wasn't important, why emphasize that his results
included Masters and Experts?

At any rate, I see no evidence of "hate" in the discussion -- some
suspicion, yes, but not hatred.


Yes, who is Detectorist anywa? Maybe, Zeiner himself?
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Old July 20th 11, 08:11 PM posted to rec.games.chess.misc
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Default Incredible 12 month chess winning streak!

On Jul 20, 11:55*pm, None wrote:
On Jul 20, 12:02*pm, Offramp wrote:

On Jul 20, 4:47*pm, Detectorist wrote:


My post was mainly on his incredible run. His rating, at least to me,
is not very important. People will try to hate on other's
accomplishments, no matter what...


Exactly. There are plenty of games throughout chess history where the
weaker player won (or drew) - but AZ has maintained a tremendous
concentration!


Yes, I'm reminded of Kevin Bachler and how he was caught manipulating
his and his students rating. Likewise Jude Acer. You would think in 99
games he would have at least two or three where he made game losing
blunder.


Right on None. Indeed something is rotten in Denmark, or Florida, and
it's not the herring or the marlin. This "Detectorist" is by his own
admission a friend of Zelner, and possibly Zelner himself. The "D"
claims Z loses money--but how would he know that, unless he was Z
himself? And what if Z is lying? And perhaps because Z is losing
money, he has an incentive to inflate his ratings, using shills who
are in on the joke?

Nobody--and I mean nobody, including Fischer (except in the semifinals
to his WC run, which was a short period of time)--ever goes from a
jagged up slowly upwards sloping line to a smooth "moon shot" in Elo
ratings over the last 8 years as Z has. You look at every single one
of the Fide or USCF charts, and I defy you to find one like Zelner's.
It takes too much skill not to lose a single game--even if your
opponent is 600 points weaker. Chess is tactics, and even with a
master if the master drops a piece or more the master can lose. Or as
Kramnik in his game against a computer, overlook a mate in one. And
as TK implied (but wrongly did not state) in this thread, Z's results
are not statistically plausible (TK said the opposite but he was on
the right track, even if he reached the wrong conclusion).

Let's do a thought experiment: one that escaped our poor dimwitted
detective TK, but does not escape me: suppose Z is 620 points
stronger than his opponents. This would mean his opponents would win
1% of the time (or accumulate enough points to get a win, same thing,
such as two draws in 200 games). If 450 points stronger Z should win
95% of the time.

What are the odds of this happening in a long series of games?

Let's look at the actual results first:

"He's [Zelner] currently rated 2423. In the last 12 months, he's
scored 98-1 against players rated under 1900. He's scored 30-0
against players rated under 2100. He's scored 6-0 against players
rated under 2300. Remarkable consistency. I'm amazed he hasn't
dropped a few games through losing focus, carelessness or over-
confidence. "

Further, we have this statement of fact: "Looks like he's won 37 out
of 38 tournaments he's played during the last 12 months. His only loss
was to his wife. " (gee, what a coincidence! NOT).

If Z plays 99 games, what are the odds that he will win 98 in a row,
if his Elo is 620 points greater? Easy: (.99)^98 =
0.37346428045426946733049283396849 = 37.3%. Conversely, the odds that
his opponents will win more than just one game is 1-37% = 63%. So if
Z won 99 games in a row it stands to reason that Z is probably
cheating, though I'd have to do a Student's t-distribution to see if
it's 95% or 99% likely that he's cheating (the usual confidence
limit). (since it's possible that he's just lucky, since he can do
this 37% of the time).

Now, since we don't know when Z lost, we cannot use this. But we do
know he won 37 games "in a row" if we leave out Z's obvious
"Valentine's Day" loss to his wife.

So instead let's assume his opponents were all patzers rated 620
points lower than him (very unlikely BTW), and we get:

The probability of Z winning 37 games in a row if he is rated 620
points higher than his average opponent: (0.99)^37 = 69%. So it's
doable if his opponents are all rated 620 points lower than Z's 2150
average (pre-2004, which is to say "pre-cheating", since look at the
graph here and judge for yourself: http://main.uschess.org/datapage/rat...emid=12400396),
or if his opponents on average are rated: 2150 - 620 = 1530 USCF Elo.
And it's very unlikely that tournament players will average 1530--that
is too weak. Likely they are higher than this, say 1700 USCF Elo.

Thus if Z's opponents are rated 450 points on average lower, or 2150-
450 = 1700 USCF Elo, then than it's not 99% but 95% chance of Z
winning, so (0.95)^37 = 15%. So the probability of Z achieving this
feat against 1700 USCF Elo opposition is only 15%. I doubt therefore
that the distribution is such that within one standard deviation
you'll get this 15% to move closer to 50%. So, without doing a
Student's t-distribution I can still say that with a high degree of
confidence, if Z's opponents are around 450 points weaker on average,
then Z can only win 37 games in a row 15% of the time. Since 15% is
only about a one in six chance of this happening by chance along, I
say it is likely Z is cheating.

So I say Z *is* cheating. Whether using software on the sly, or,
paying or cajoling opponents to cheat, he is cheating.

RL
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