Local man tries to revive chess in the Southern Tier

By Steph Machado

April 15, 2013 Updated Apr 15, 2013 at 1:35 PM EDT

Binghamton, NY (WBNG Binhgamton) John Cordisco held the 4th annual Broome County Chess Championship this weekend in Binghamton.

When Cordisco returned to the game of chess four years ago, he realized there weren't any local tournaments. So, he started his own in his corner store.

The tournament is held in memory of his late brother, Francis Cordisco.

"If you're a player, it's hard to describe," Cordisco said. "There's a quote I use all the time: 'If you think that chess is a game, you're not playing it right.'"

Cordisco says he refers to chess as a sport, not a game.

The tournament had about a dozen people playing in two sections: Open and reserves.

Dave Goguen took first place in the open and Daniel Dudley took first place in the reserves. Cordisco made the list too, taking second in the reserves.

The winners will share the $1,000 grand prize.

But Cordisco says above all, he hopes chess gains the popularity it once had.

"It used to be huge back in the '70s," he said. "Back in the Fischer era, it was huge."

Cordisco was referring to Bobby Fischer, the chess grandmaster who is considered by many to be the greatest chess player of all time.

Cordisco is hopeful chess will come back into style.

"It will stand the test of time," he said. "Video games and board games come and go, but this still goes on and on."