Team Ludwig/Hess Wins 2021 Twitch Rivals Chess Hand & Brain

Team Ludwig/Hess Wins 2021 Twitch Rivals Chess Hand & Brain

| 24 | Chess Event Coverage

Team Ludwig/Hess has won the 2021 edition of Twitch Rivals Chess: Hand & Brain. The duo defeated Team Sardoche/Blitzstream 2-0 in the final of the championship bracket to clinch the $5,000 first prize as well as a year's supply of Doritos.

Replay the live broadcast.

Coincident or not, GM Robert Hess and Ludwig Ahgren, the American Twitch streamer, YouTuber, Smash Bros player/commentator, and celebrity personality, were interviewed before the start of the event. When pointed out that in a Hand & Brain tournament it's all about the chemistry between the players, the following one-two punch made its mark:

Ludwig, who played as the hand: "We've got great chemistry. I tell him to watch movies. He waits seven weeks to watch them." Hess, who played as the brain: "And I say, hey, let's have a lesson and he waits seven weeks to have a chess lesson. So we're even, right?"

About five hours later, from all the 16 teams participating, Ludwig and Hess ended up as the winners. The famous streamer had a logical explanation for the success: "I've always said, the one thing holding me back in my chess play is my brain. And today he turned up!"

In the first stage of the tournament, Ludwig/Hess shared first place in their group with Team Fundy/akaNemsko, consisting of the Dutch YouTuber and Twitch streamer Fundy and WGM Qiyu Zhou.

In the championship bracket, Ludwig/Hess defeated Team Northernlion/BotezLive (video game player Ryan Letourneau and Andrea Botez) in the semifinals before their win against Sardoche/Blitzstream (the French streamer and League of Legends player Andreas Honnet and NM Kevin Bordi).

The consolation bracket was won by Team Turk/Photochess, consisting of Twitch streamer Turk and streamer/photographer WFM Maria Emelianova

All games by Ludwig/Hess

Ludwig making some dancing moves in the decisive second game.

In Hand & Brain, one player gets to name "king," "queen," "rook," "bishop," "knight," or "pawn." Then the other player decides the move to make. This Twitch Rivals Chess: Hand & Brain was played with 16 duos, all consisting of content creators, playing the hand, and titled players, playing the brain.

The format consisted of four round-robin groups from which the fourth-place finishers were eliminated. All teams coming in second and third moved to a consolation bracket while all winners played in the championship bracket. All games were played with 10 minutes and a five-second increment.

The total prize fund was $35,000. Ludwig/Hess won $5,000 plus a year's supply of Doritos, while Turk/Photochess won $2,000.

After the Komodo Boss Rush in 2019 and the Twitch Rivals Chess Showdown in 2020, this was the third time that chess was featured in Twitch's Rivals series, a series of competitive events for Twitch streamers and viewers in a wide range of esports.

Ludwig with a bit of trash talk after the win.

With this victory, Ludwig seems to be one of the favorites in the upcoming PogChamps 4 which starts in just two days. Another conclusion might be that we should be taking his recent tweet, that this will be his last PogChamps, with a grain of salt. His chess deserves better!

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