“In chess is like in boxing. You have to use your head. In order to survive, in order to win, you need an extraordinary reaction and a great speed of your thought. But in boxing it hurts more if you lose.” These words belong to Kubrat Pulev and with them Bulgarian Heavyweight pride described the relationship between the two sports, which today had their unusual meeting at also more unusual place – the building of the Supreme Judicial Council in Sofia.
Kubrat demonstrated exceptional class, proving that he is not only a real champion at the ring, and in front of the chessboard as well. The new Intercontinental champion of the World Boxing Association forced the legendary grandmaster Veselin Topalov to ask for a draw. Pulev, who played with black pieces, generously agreed and shook hands with the former world chess champion (2005-2006) and ex-leader in the world rankings.
“I am impressed. I had heard that you love to play and you’re keen on chess, but you’re really good”, said Topalov to Pulev after the draw, which was part of the big chess show and included personalities as former footballer of Levski Hristo Yovov and two future Bulgarian chess stars – world champion for girls Nurgül Selimova and European champion – Gabriela Antova. In the team against Topalov had eight magistrates too.
“I play only for fun. And as an amateur fan. I did not read chess books and textbooks. Deliberately do not do it because I do not want to spoil my style. I want to rely on my sense and my head”, added Kubrat. He told the press an interesting story: for his last match against Samuel Peter for the Intercontinental WBA title he had a sparring partner of Belarus – seven years in a row world champion in chess-boxing.