Playing as black: Norwegian chess sensation Carlsen bruises eye ahead of crunch match
Norwegian chess grand master Magnus Carlsen has suffered a bruising encounter away from the board, injuring his eye ahead of the crucial match against US star Fabiano Caruana at the World Chess Championship in London, UK.
“The match is heating up,” the reigning world champion wrote on Instagram, along with a photo showing his black eye which he injured while playing football during a day off.
On Tuesday, the 27-year-old collided with another player during a football training session and sustained a slight head injury, which will not affect his performance at the World Championship according to doctors.
“There’s no concussion, as we had feared,” said Dr Brede Kvisvik, adding that they applied ice to reduce swelling around his eye.
“If he has any vision problems, then it can be difficult [to compete],” Kvisvik said, also assuring that Carlsen’s brain is “functioning just as well” despite the football incident.
The "Mozart of chess" – as Carlsen was dubbed by the Washington Post at the age of 14 – is fighting to retain the world chess crown which he has held since 2013.
The reigning champ is facing tough resistance from Caruana, the first American to compete for the world title since Bobby Fischer in 1972.
Neither of the players has celebrated a single victory so far, with draws being registered in all eight rounds that have been played.
The ninth game is scheduled to take place on Wednesday, with both grand masters eyeing the chance to clinch the title.