It's a rather special tournament that took place in London (United Kingdom) this Sunday.

The British capital indeed hosted in one of its swimming pools the world diving chess championship, reports

Le Parisien


The principle is as simple as its name: the chess board, equipped with magnetic pieces, is immersed at the bottom of the water.

Two players in bathing suits then dive in turn to the bottom of the pool to play their shot, and must therefore remain in apnea throughout the reflection and movement of the piece.

This is Dive chess, played underwater with a submerged chessboard and magnetic pieces

— Reuters (@Reuters) August 16, 2022

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Make chess “cool”

But why ?

The idea for this original game comes from the American Etan Ilfeld, chess master, who currently lives in England.

He started playing at the age of 4 and started tournaments at 10.

The latter found it rather “cool” to incorporate a physical and sporting aspect into chess and therefore imagined this practice.

“Trying to see the pieces, to stay down is much more difficult,” confirmed a player, as quoted by

Le Parisien


“Especially if you're playing a long game, doing 30-40 moves and going down and up each time, it's a marathon in itself.


This weekend, the tournament brought together ten participants from all over the world.

And it was finally the Polish Michal Mazurkiewicz who, at 33, emerged victorious.

He won the final beating South African Alain Dekker.

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  • Apnea

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  • Swimming pool

  • London

  • Championship

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