“The intellect gives strength, and strength gives bravery”, the Turkmen proverb says. Perhaps these wise words describe the character of chess player from Turkmenistan Arslan Otchiyev.
A few years ago, a 28-year-old native of Lebap province, a six-time national chess champion, now living in Connecticut, USA, decided to diversify his career and engage in martial arts. Having won the championship titles in the United States, he does not abandon chess.
According to Arslan, chess experience serves as a good help in the ring.
“Especially in my Jiu-Jitsu game,” Otchiyev told to MMASucka portal. “If I train really hard in chess for eight hours a day, then it really helps me with Jiu-Jitsu. When I do Jiu-Jitsu, I can forestall things. You think really fast. I can think faster and better when I practice a lot of chess and Jiu-Jitsu”.
The titled chess player got fascinated by fighting sports in 2006, when he observed one of the battles. The speed and skill with which the fighter knocked his opponent down struck him.
In Ukraine, where Arslan studied, he picked up sambo training, and then decided to expand the range of his fighting activities. Already being in Connecticut, Otchiyev continued training in Mixed Martial Arts (MMA), which is a combination of techniques from various combat sports and martial arts.
Of course, the master of black and white board has no great victories in the fighting field, but only amateur fights. However, each training session, each knockout, blow, capture and, at times, submission, bring the valuable experience, which is a key to conquering professional peaks. One just needs to wait for the moment of absolute readiness and confidence in abilities. And, it seems that time for professional debut of Arslan has come.
On 15 June, Lincoln, Rhode Island, hosted CES 50 tournament very popular and spectacular show. On the arena of Twin River Casino, our compatriot fought against Brendan Marrotte, who had already had one win in a similar competition.
Unfortunately, Arslan lost the victory to his opponent. But let’s hope that he still has to show off his talent in the fight ring, as in chess.