[Published on 18 Aug, 1997]
The world of competitive sport faces a new breed of athlete -
the mental gymnast - vying for gold at the first Mind Sports
Olympiad, a week of brain games that opens in London today.
Instead of slugging it out in the boxing ring or tumbling
across padded floormats, competitors perform intellectual
acrobatics in events ranging from speed reading to computer
programming and crossword puzzles to the more traditional
chess and checkers.
More than 1,500 people have signed up to take part in the
Olympiad, which is open to anyone wanting to test his or
her cranial capacity - and spend a week playing games.
CHESS AND CHECKERS