IN a bizarre twist at the Tradewise Gibraltar Chess Festival, women's world champion Hou Yifan (pictured) gave away a game in the final round of the Masters tournament.
This curious move, at the tournament labelled the best Open in the world, was a personal protest to indicate her dissatisfaction with the pairings throughout the event.
The 22-year-old "Queen of Chess" said she had been upset with the "unbelievable and weird" pairings, as she had drawn seven women players out of 10 rounds.
"It makes me really, really upset," she said. "Not just for me but for the other women players.”
Later, a contrite Hou apologised to the other chess players, to her fans and those following the Gibraltar Masters for resigning her game against Lalith Babu from India.
Tournament organizer, Brian Callaghan said that he was disappointed at what had happened and felt she had let herself down.
Although Mr Callaghan said that he understood Hou Yifan’s concerns he did not believe that the pairings had been wrong or that the tournament had suffered as a result.
Summing up the episode, he said that the world champion had a “bad day at the office.”