Star Athletes Who Also Play Chess – Chess is For Everyone
on December 11, 2018

Chess is a game of the mind, a game which anybody can play, which you can practice and get better at the more you learn and try. It is similar to other games, in that regard, yet it also requires that extra bit of focus and foresight to understand and plan for all the possibilities.

Research is paramount for chess; it is similar in that regard to sports betting. One can just play chess or bet, or do some research and become a much better punter or chess player. As an upcoming chess player can learn about new moves, so can a punter learn about new online bookmakers. A punter can learn more here, get to know the famous Golden Nugget’s upcoming online sportsbook. Chess players can start their journey here.

Many professional athletes played or actively play chess as a recreational activity. There are known retired professionals who were and are avid chess players. Some of them learned online, others had deep connections to chess from their youth. Here is a list of professional athletes who also played or play chess actively, in no particular order.

Wilt Chamberlain

Wilt Chamberlain, the late great basketball player (also a star in Conan the Destroyer, alongside Arnold Schwarzenegger) was a very passionate chess player. He was said to have once phoned Bobby Fischer, a chess grandmaster, to come over for dinner and chess. Bobby politely declined, due to the fact that there would be more people there. Wilt was caught on camera more than once during his career, even prior to it, playing chess.

Boris Becker

There are many great names in tennis, but none of them come close to Boris Becker’s victory at Wimbledon, at the age of 17. Boris said that chess helped him find new ways of playing tennis. He played an exhibition match against Garry Kasparov, a chess grandmaster, in 2000. Boris Becker also opened the 2011 London Chess Classic by making the traditional first move.

Wladimir Klitschko

This name is familiar to any boxing fan. Klitschko dominated the heavyweight boxing scene from 2006 to 2015. He defended his championship 14 times and had a record of 64 wins and 5 losses. Another thing, fairly known about Klitschko, is that he plays a lot of chess.

He was introduced to chess by his brother, Vitali, another heavyweight champion. They played chess throughout their difficult childhood and still play it to this day. Klitschko once lost to Kasparov, in 25 moves. He also played against Vladimir Kramnik, another chess grandmaster.

Steve Davis

Steve Davis is a retired 6-time snooker world champion. He also loves chess. He co-authored a book with chess grandmaster David Norwood. He was also the president of the British Chess Foundation for a while.

Many people consider professional athletes to have brawn and not brains, yet these people, and many others, consistently prove that saying wrong. These are but a few of the many professional athletes who also played or play chess actively.