Chess is one of the most popular board games in the world and probably the most well-known. Chess is a battle of the mind, with two players competing against each other using wit, strategy and tactics with nothing left to chance.

Played on an eight-by-eight square board with 16 pieces per side, chess is deceptively simple but as mathematical analysis shows, the number of potential games is enormous - in fact, greater than the total number of atoms in the universe.

Chess requires the ability to think many moves ahead, but also a high level of intuition, which is why humans can still compete with computers. This is particularly the case in speed chess and blitz chess, when there is a restriction on the time allowed for a move.


Chess is believed to have originated in ancient India, with the earliest pieces excavated by archaeologists dating back to 3000BC, although a competing theory traces the game back to China.

The game gradually spread west through the Muslim world, reaching Europe by the 10th century. There were many different variations, so players had to make a gentleman's agreement on the rules before a match could start.

By the end of the 15th century, the modern rules were almost all in place after the Europeans extended the power of the queen and the bishop. The list of unofficial world champions goes back to this time, as there was usually one player regarded as the best (or at least the most famous) in the world, with the title passing from champion to challenger.

The World Chess Federation (FIDE - after the French language Federation Internationale des Echecs) was founded in Paris in 1924 and formalised the world championship in 1946 where Mikhail Botvinnik was the first official world champion. In 1993, FIDE organised the first knockout world championship, replacing the old challenge system.

FIDE was recognised by the International Olympic Committee in June 1999. Chess was made its Asian Games debut at Doha 2006.


Each player has 16 pieces: a king, a queen, two rooks, two bishops, two knights and eight pawns. Pieces are either white or black.

The object of chess is to force a position where your opponent's king cannot escape capture, a position known as "checkmate".

The players take turns moving their pieces, with the "white" player always moving first. By moving on to a square containing an opponent's piece, it is possible to make a capture and remove that piece from the game.

When making a move that threatens the opponent's king, a player must inform his opponent by saying "check". When the king cannot escape, that is "checkmate" and the game is over.

Championship games rarely get this far. Top players can analyse the position so far ahead they usually either force a resignation or agree to a draw.

The 15th Asian Games features a mixed team competition played over nine matches in two different formats: classical (with a time limit of 90 minutes for each player's moves, and 30 seconds added after every move) and rapid (where the limit is 25 minutes with a 10 second addition).

The three-person team comprises two males and one female player.


 Chess in Pakistan

It is said that the game of chess has its roots and origin in the Indus valley, incidentally in those parts which are now part and parcel of Pakistan. The archaeologist have dug out artifacts from the ruins of Mohenjodaro, which resemble the chess pieces. Historians assert that the civilization perished around 3000 B.C. From there chess may have gone to Iran and then to Arabia. The Arabs introduced it into Europe: Baghdad and Tripoli have remained chess centres of the world for centuries. Khalifa Haroon Rashid patronised chess and so did the rulers of other Islamic countries for centuries after his death.

Chess in the present times is played the world over and 125 countries are affiliated to the World Chess Federation. Chess is very popular in Western countries specially in the USSR, the USA, Yugoslavia, Britain, Hungary, Germany and others. Soviet Union has dominated the world championships for the last 50 years. A numbers of magazines are published on chess from different parts of the world. In Pakistan, chess is played throughout the country mostly In Moghul style which is slightly different from the international style. But the Chess Federation of Pakistan (CFP) organises its tournaments in international style and according to the established rules. Despite meager National Championships and send players abroad for international events regularly during the last 6 years.

World Chess Federation has awarded it the following titles :

  • Diploma of achievement to Chess Federation of Pakistan in 1986
  • International Master's Title to Shahzad Mirza in 1984
  • International Arbiter's Title to S.P.Jamal and Shah Nawaz Khan

Performance in International Events:

  •  In 1969 in Istanbul (Turkey) Pakistan won the first RCD Chess Championship.