As a curious crowd of admirers stood watching, two-time Canadian chess champion, Grandmaster Bator Sambuev, played against some 20 students simultaneously in a chess exhibition at Vanier College on April 25, 2018.

“We thought it would draw people in and create a bit of a buzz around chess at school because it’s a fun game, it’s a great game and not enough people think that it’s cool and it is cool,” said Vanier English teacher Mark Cohen, who helps run the Vanier Chess Initiative.

The Vanier Chess Initiative, who organized the event, aims to use chess as a way to motivate students by calling on their interest and passion for chess and helping them apply that to their studies and their education.

Participants in the game were each charged $5 to play. All of the proceeds went to the Friendship Circle of Montreal, a non-profit organization that provides assistance and support to young people with special needs and their families.

Although two players got quite close – Sambuev won all 20 games against the students.

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