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Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Philippines requests to include chess in Olympic Games

From the FIDE website:

During a visit of the FIDE President, Kirsan Ilyumzhinov to the Philippines, the Head of the National Olympic Committee (NOC), Mr. Jose Cojuangco Jr., signed an appeal to the Head of the International Olympic Committee (IOC), Mr. Jacques Rogge, and IOC members, requesting the inclusion of chess in the program of the Olympic Games.  

Ilyumzhinov noted: "We are working towards the goal of including chess in the program of the Olympic Games. Following on from our longstanding consultations with the IOC and its Head, Mr. Jacques Rogge, it has become clear that we have good chances, but we need active support from the national federations and Olympic Committees. We set ourselves, as a priority, an ultimate goal to collect letters, containing such a request, from the NOCs of all 170 FIDE member countries. There is no obvious reason why these letters have not yet appeared; I have made great efforts. I would like to express my gratitude to the President of the National Chess Federation of the Philippines, Mr. Prospero A. Pichay Jr., and to the President of the Philippines NOC, Mr. Jose Cojuangco Jr., who were the first to respond to our request."

Isn’t there already a chess Olympiad?  Why add it to the Olympics?  Is chess a sport like other Olympic games?  Why not add poker and blackjack? Adding chess would increase exposure and bring in more money.  Ah…there it is…more money.  Not that bringing in money is a bad thing. One fly in the ointment for years that has had players in a snit though is the probability of mandatory drug testing.  I’m not sure how I feel about the whole idea. 

1 comment:

  1. I suppose the one thing chess has going for it over other games is its long history. So if it is allowed it could be called "grandfathered in" ;-)