Wits and Wrath combined into one sport, which is actually to, tied together. Chess Boxing as an organized sport was thought up nearly 20 years ago in two different places – in 1992 by Enki Bilal in France, showing his blueprint for the hybrid sport in a graphic novel and a year earlier in a Finnish movie. The first reference to this field, however, is from 1978, in London.
It took about a decade for the first world championship to take place, and it has been overseen since 2003 by the WCBO, the World Chess Boxing Organisation. The Motto – Fighting is done in the ring, wars are waged on the board.
London is pretty much the center and heart of the sport. How does it work – Well, first of all, the competitors must be both skilled boxers and chess players. For example, Nikolai Sazhin has an ELO rating of 1900, something of a low expert level in Chess. The game can be won and lost in the ring or on the board.
The match consists of up to eleven rounds, alternating between the fight and the chess match. It begins with a four minute chess round, then moves to a two minute boxing round and keeps on alternating till the end. A form of speed chess is used, meaning each player has twelve minutes in total for the entire chess game. A win can be achieved by way of knockout, checkmate or a judges decision. If the chess game can’t be decided, the scores from the bout are used to determine the winner.
So if you’re looking to train your fists and that grey matter in your skull, this is the sport for you.