Think about the best boxing matches of all time: Muhammad Ali vs. George Foreman, Ali vs. Frazier, Sugar Ray vs. Duran etc. Now picture those hall of fame boxers before their fights; walking down towards the ring with the crowds cheering. As they enter the ring hoping to rewrite history, they visualize how they want the fight to go. Next, the referee does his safety check and clears each boxer. The bell rings, meaning round one has begun, the fighters approach the center of the ring, sit down, and begin playing a game of chess.
Yes, a chess game, literally.
Now stop imagining and welcome to reality! Welcome to Chess Boxing! This sport is actually picking up momentum and has grown year over year. Some argue it might be considered to become an olympic sport. (I highly doubt it) However, there are world championships of Chess Boxing every year. Last year they had an impressive 244 contestants. This year they expect 300+ participants to take part in these championships.
- There are a total of 11 rounds that alternate between Chess and Boxing.
- 6 rounds of Chess will be played.
- Each round is 3 minutes long
- Winner is decided by : Knock out, check mate, disqualification, time limit violation, or Judge’s decision.
The first Chess Boxing World Championships were held in Moscow, Russia in 2013 and have been held yearly ever since. This year the world championships are scheduled for July 26-29 in Kolkata, india. If you consider yourself a decent chess player with a fighter’s punch or vice versa, take a shot.