Manny Pacquiao‘s intense passion for chess knows no bounds.
He plays it anywhere, anytime, against anybody. Be it on a plane, a bus, a yacht, in the morning, afternoon, evening, even at dawn. Be it against fellow amateurs, Team Pacquiao members, fellow legislators, and local masters.
No wonder, the newly retired boxing legend eagerly accepted the offer for him to play against longtime reigning world champion Magnus Carlsen.
Of course not the present Carlsen, who has lorded over the royal game for a decade now. And to make it even more impressive in all time controls – classical, rapid, and blitz.
Pacquiao, a non-tournament player, will test his mettle against the young version of the Norwegian icon on the Play Magnus app on Friday, October 1, in the Magnus Carlsen Celebrity Charity Challenge.
Just by playing with Carlsen, the game’s highest-rated player ever with an Elo 2882, Pacquiao will get $5,000 (P250,000) which will go to the Manny Pacquiao Foundation focused on helping destitute Filipinos.
If Pacquiao lasts 50 moves he will break the 49 moves set by Sam Bankman-Fried, founder and CEO of cryptocurrency exchange FTX, and get $50,000 (P2.5 million).
To be played under two-minute time control, the Carlsen-Pacquiao match will be broadcast in the ongoing 2021 Champions Chess Tour Finals
Carlsen said: “I can’t wait to see how the legendary Manny Pacquiao does against a 10-year-old me on the Play Magnus app. I wasn’t world champion back then, but I was already playing decently so it’s going to be hard!”
According to Norwegian records, Carlsen’s Elo rating was 1645 when he was 10 and it climbed to 2127 the next year when he was conferred the FIDE Master title.
Pacquiao, who has sponsored the 2013 and 2018 Asian Continental Chess Championships in the Philippines, said: “This is something that doesn’t happen every day and I will be placed in a different arena this time around.” – Rappler.com