Chess champion Alexandra Botez, who has been compared to the fictional protagonist of the Netflix hit show The Queen‘s Gambit, has demonstrated her impressive skills by beating a hardnosed chess hustler in Union Square Park in Manhattan in under 10 minutes.
Botez, 25, who has six national championship titles under her belt and holds the International Chess Federation title of Women’s FIDE Master, visited the iconic New York City plaza while on vacation and challenged several tough street players to a game of chess.
During one bout, Botez, who is also an Instagram influencer with more than 410,000 followers, made quick work of an older player, trouncing him in 8 minutes 26 seconds.
‘So you’ve been destroying everybody today,’ Botez, sporting a white summer minidress and flashing a smile, tells her grizzled opponent, whom she teasingly accused of ‘hustling people all day.’
Chess champion Alexandra Botez recently faced off against one of Union Square’s hustlers in Manhattan and made quick work of him
Botez, 25, who has six national championship titles and holds the International Chess Federation title of Women’s FIDE Master, wasted no time going on the offensive
It took the glamorous chess influences under 9 minutes to defeat her opponent
The friendly street game ended with a handshake between Botez and her vanquished opponent
The street player halfheartedly denies being a hustler, but Botez lets him know she is onto him, saying: ‘you’re playing a little bit too quickly to not be a hustler, sir.’
The pair enjoy a friendly repartee and trade lighthearted jabs over a rapid-fire game of chess.
As Botez goes in for the kill, her opponent laments: ‘that is just mean.’
Sacrificing a pawn, a triumphant Botez quips: ‘I’ll give you that as my parting gift.’
After a brief cat-and-mouse game, Botez corners the hustler’s king, forcing him to concede: ‘she knows this!’
Botez has been compared to Beth Harmon, the fictional chess prodigy in Netflix’s The Queens Gambit (left)
Botez has a 410,000-person strong following on Instagram
Botez, a native of Texas who grew up in Canada, has been playing chess since the age of six.
Botez’s popularity online has exploded since Netflix released The Queen’s Gambit, starring Anya Taylor-Joy (pictured), last October
The two shake hands to the sound of bystanders’ appreciative applause. Someone asks Botez off camera if she is a nationally ranked chess player, to which she humbly replies: ‘I’m a master.’
Video capturing Botez’s triumph has been viewed on her popular YouTube channel, BotezLive, more than 3.2million times since July 2.
Botez was born in Dallas, Texas, and raised in Canada by her Romanian immigrant parents. She started playing chess when she was just six years old after her father made a wager with her mother.
‘My mom only plays a little. So he made a bet that he could teach me to play and that, in only two weeks, I would be able to beat her,’ she told the New York Post back in December, as The Queen’s Gambit, starring Anya Taylor-Joy as a troubled, pill-popping chess prodigy, was on everyone’s lips.
Botez was just eight years old when she competed in her first national championship and won first place for her division, Insider reported.
The Stanford University graduate has more than 859,000 followers on the live-streaming gaming platform Twitch
Botez’s 19-year-old sister, Andrea (left), is also a chess player
Her passion for chess continued when her family moved back to Texas. She was 15 when she won the US Girls National championship for females 18 and under.
Botez has won a total of six national championships and holds the International Chess Federation title of Women’s FIDE Master. However, she’s more than just a talented chess player.
The rising gaming star graduated from Stanford University in 2017 with a bachelor’s degree in international relations. She made her mark at the university by becoming the first female president of Stanford’s chess club.
She was still in college when she started live-streaming chess on the gaming platform Twitch under her BotezLive account, which she runs with her 19-year-old sister, Andrea, who is also a chess player. The pair now have more than 859,000 followers.