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Nigerian chess maestro Tunde Onakoya smashes Guinness world record for marathon chess

Onakoya's historic feat highlights the power of determination and solidarity in the heart of Times Square.

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In a momentous achievement for the global chess community, Nigerian chess master Tunde Onakoya has etched his name into the annals of history by setting a new Guinness World Record for the longest marathon chess session. Onakoya’s remarkable endeavor, which unfolded against the iconic backdrop of New York City’s bustling Times Square, surpassed all expectations and shattered previous records with unparalleled tenacity and skill.

Confirming his triumph through a post on his official account, Onakoya expressed both elation and determination as he rallied supporters to push beyond the 60-hour mark. His unwavering resolve to exceed expectations underscores a deeper purpose: raising funds and awareness for the education of underprivileged African children worldwide. In his own words, this noble cause serves as the driving force behind his extraordinary feat—an embodiment of the transformative power of love and solidarity.

Onakoya’s feat eclipsed the previous record set by Norwegian players Hallvard Haug Flatebø and Sjur Ferkingstad in 2018, marking a historic milestone in the world of chess. As the clock ticked past the 56-hour mark, Onakoya’s endurance and strategic prowess propelled him into uncharted territory, setting him apart as a beacon of inspiration for aspiring chess enthusiasts everywhere.

Collaborating with his US counterpart, Shawn Martinez, Onakoya embarked on this monumental challenge under the banner of his foundation, Chess in Slums Africa. The partnership between these two esteemed National Masters symbolizes the spirit of camaraderie and excellence that defines the chess community—a testament to the transformative potential of the game beyond the board.

The outpouring of support from notable figures, including President Bola Tinubu, Lagos State Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu, and renowned artists Davido and Adekunle Gold, underscores the significance of Onakoya’s achievement on both national and international stages. Their endorsement serves as a powerful affirmation of Onakoya’s dedication to leveraging his passion for chess to effect positive change in the lives of disadvantaged youth across Africa.

As Onakoya and Martinez continue to defy the odds and push the boundaries of endurance, their endeavor serves as a rallying cry for unity, resilience, and the boundless potential of the human spirit. In the heart of Times Square, amid the hustle and bustle of city life, a timeless game of strategy unfolds—a testament to the enduring legacy of chess and the indomitable spirit of those who dare to dream.

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