Image: Karthik Subramanian
The earphones are to keep out all those distracting arena noises.
If you haven’t already heard of chess boxing, you might be forgiven for thinking you’ve wandered into some kind of absurd comedy sketch. However, the sport is very real, and although it might still be marginal, it is growing. It’s already a popular sport in London and Berlin, but it has also started to spread throughout the world – to places as diverse as Tokyo, Calcutta, Nantes, Los Angeles, and Krasnoyarsk in Russia.