Thursday, 29 October 2009

Chess as a sport

"Chess as a sport", not "Chess is a sport", which is another topic entirely.
The Asian Indoor Games is starting tomorrow in Vietnam, and Chess is one of the medal sports, alongside Track-and-Field, Fin swimming and Snooker (plus many others). More importantly, Chess is also a medal sport in the South-East Asian Games, which is a full sporting contest for South-East Asian Countries.
Why is this important? Simply because it avoids the semantic arguments about whether chess is a sport. One of the important aspects of the recent tournament in the Solomon Islands were discussions with the Solomon Islands government about support for chess through their sports commission. To this end, both myself and Oceania Zone President Gary Bekker stressed the importance of getting chess into the Pacific Games. This suggestion was met favourably by the SI Government btw.
Now to be honest, I can't see chess being a medal sports at the Olympics (unless they take up my suggestion of holding an Indoor Olympics + plus an Extreme Sports Olympics to fill the gaps between the winter and summer games), but getting it into regional games (Asia, the Pacific and Africa) can't hurt the development of chess in those regions.

1 comment:

Paul said...

Chess is Chess. I leave it to the pundits to determine whether it is a sport or not. At my level it doesn't really matter.