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Danlei “Pengting” Zhu talks about her victory in St Patrick’s Day Bash 23.
Danlei was born in China, brought up in Bristol and living in London across the river from Gavin in Canary Wharf. The podcast was recorded just after the London marathon and Ruth, Danlei’s opponent ran the marathon the year before – road work is how she stays fit. Danlei picked up an ACL injury so she swims to keep fit and loves her “bone conduction headphones” where she can listen to music while she swims.
Danlei is a metal trader in the city including precious metals such as gold. Sadly she doesn’t own any gold but she can give you tips on when to buy. The pair discuss the Brink’s-Mat robbery and how it relates to Canary Wharf and the docklands, much of which was developed using the stolen bullion. The heist took place in the 1980 when £26 million in gold was stolen form Heathrow airport, in fact, it was so much gold that as soon as it was stolen it was worth £27 million as the markets moved once the news was out. Although some of the gold was recovered most of it was laundered by purchasing the docklands around Canary Wharf and Rotherhithe. You can watch the dramatisation here on the BBC.
Danlei heard about chess boxing via a google search before heading down to Islington Boxing Club for a training session. Somehow Danlei managed to get onto a short film which won a Louise Theroux competition. Soon enough she found herself in a chessboxing event in front of one of the best chess boxing crowds around. Danlei found the waiting and build up more nerve racking than the actual fight. Luckily she was on first, along with her mates in the audience helped to settle the nerve.
The fight itself followed a well trodden path of initially good chess, with high intensity boxing rounds taking there toll on both players. Danlei wasn’t prepared for the loud music in headphones which she found distracting. The music is played in the headphones so that neither fighter can hear the commentators. The chess was very even, slow and attritional until the middle game when Ruth contrived to get her bishop trapped going a piece down. Danlei missed a rook on pre and the time pressure resulted in the last mistake of the game when Danlei was able to back rank Ruth. You can find the entire chess game at www.chessboxing.info.
During the boxing rounds Ruth did well to weather a flurry of combinations including a repeated shovel hook from Danlei which resulted in a standing 8 count. Danlei was dropping her left hand on occasion and Ruth was able to land several overhands. Both boxers had good punch volume, could Danlei go for 3 minute rounds next time? Maybe if she holds up on the beers and the burgers.
What is Danlei’s favourite chocolate bar? She has a soft spot for Tony’s Chocolonely – shout out to Tony!
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