SPRAGGETT ON CHESS
IS CHESS A SPORT OR A GAME?
Chess is today considered a sport in most of the world, though in Canada the beaurocrats have made it pretty clear that chess will never get that recognition. I wrote a short spoof about chess as a sport in Canada several weeks ago, and it seemed to generate some discussion on the message boards in Canadian chess. From what I can see, as many chess players are against the idea of classifying chess as a sport as are for it.
Seems fair enough to me: if the chess community is divided then why should the government even take the proposal for making chess a sport serious? IN ANY CASE, as Montreal IM Jean Hebert points out, it is just a classification. Chess has to make it on its own virtue(s). Calling it a sport will not bring in more fans, players or sponsors…though it might end the fruitless arm-wrestling trying to convince the nay-sayers in Canada!
FORTUNATELY, there are many successful examples of chess as a respected sport. Thanks to Mark Week’s blog just the other day I caught this CNN feature about the number one sport in Azerbaijan :chess! He writes :‘‘The young in Azerbaijan are obsessed with chess. CNN’s Jim Boulden reports from the capital of Baku.”
It is a really nicely done feature. Enjoy!