World Chess Championship 2020 Betting Odds, Predictions, and Preview

World Chess Championship 2020 Betting Odds, Predictions, and Preview

The 2020 World Chess Championship will be held later in 2020 under the jurisdiction of FIDE, the governing body of chess, and will pit reigning world champion Magnus Carlsen against an opponent yet to be determined. Carlsen’s opponent will be revealed following the FIDE Candidates Tournament 2020, which starts later this month in Russia.

FIDE Candidates Tournament 2020 Chess Icon

The FIDE Candidates Tournament 2020 is an eight-player tournament that will determine who will challenge defending champion Magnus Carlsen for the World Chess Championship in 2020 later this year. The tournament will be held in a double round-robin format at the Hyatt Regency Hotel in Yekaterinburg, Russia, from March 15, 2020 to April 5, 2020.

The tournament will consist of 14 rounds, with each player facing off against each other twice: once with white pieces and once with black pieces. The time limit will be 100 minutes for the first 40 moves, 50 minutes for the next 20 moves, and 15 minutes for the rest of the game, plus a 30-second increment per move beginning with move 1.

The opening ceremony and player technical meeting will take place on March 16, 2020, with Round 1 beginning the following day on March 17th. After every three rounds, players will have a day off. The 14th and final round will take place on April 3, 2020, and if there is a tie-break, it will take place the next day, along with the closing ceremonies.

The winner of the FIDE Candidates Tournament 2020 will receive a cash prize in addition to the right to face the current world champion in the World Championship. The total cash prize fund is 500,000 euros, and players who finish with the same score after 14 rounds will share the prize equally.

Chess Icon FIDE Candidates Tournament History

FIDE first organized the tournament in 1950 as the final contest to determine the World Championship challenger. From 1950 to 1992, it was held as a triennial tournament, or every three years. The cycle was disrupted in 1996, during the World Championships split, and even after reunification in 2006. It became a biennial event in 2013, with the qualification stage held on odd years and the tournament proper held on even years, with the world championship taking place the same year after the tournament.

In the first tournament, David Bronstein and Isaac Boleslavsky tied for first place. Bronstein won one of their matches and finished the World Championship tied with world champion Mikhail Botvinnik. As a result of the tie, Botvinnik retained his world title. Vassily Smyslov won the tournament three years later and faced Botvinnik in the World Championship. The latter retained his world title after the two played to a draw. Smyslov won the Amsterdam tournament in 1956 and went on to dethrone Botvinnik in the world championship.

Only Boris Spassky, Victor Korchnoi, and Viswanathan Anand have advanced to the second round of the tournament after losing the first. Spassky lost his first match against Petroisian in 1966, but beat him again in 1969. Meanwhile, Korchnoi was defeated twice by Anatoly Karpov, in 1978 and 1981.

Magnus Carlsen and Vladimir Kramnik competed in a dramatic and historic match in London in 2013. Carlsen and Kramnik finished tied after both of their final round matches were lost. They competed in two-tiebreakers, with Carlsen winning.

Later, the Norwegian would defeat Anand for the world title. In 2014, Anand won the next tournament, but Carlsen successfully defended his world title against the man he defeated. In addition to Karjakin, the Norwegian defeated Fabiano Caruana in 2018. Carlsen will defend his world title for the fourth time this year, and the winner of the FIDE Candidates Tournament 2020 will be his next opponent.

Who Are the Opponents?

Fabiano Caruana is a chess grandmaster from Italy who won the 2019 FIDE Candidates Tournament. He is the world’s second-ranked chess player, with a rating of 2842. In 2016, Caruana finished second to Sergey Karjakin. In 2007, the 27-year-old from Miami, Florida, became a grandmaster. He won the London Chess Classic in 2017 and became the first American to challenge for a world title since Bobby Fischer in 1972 the following year.

Ding Liren is a three-time Chinese chess champion and the highest-rated Chinese chess player in history. The 27-year-old reached the Chess World Cup finals in 2017 and 2019, but finished second in both tournaments. Ding currently ranks third in the world in chess, with a rating of 2805.

Alexander Grischuk is the 2009 Russian Chess champion and three-time world blitz chess champion. With a rating of 2777, the 36-year-old is the world’s fourth-ranked chess player. Grischuk will compete in the Candidates Tournament for the fifth time, with a best finish of second place in 2011.

After finishing second in the 2019 FIDE Grand Prix, Ian Nepomniachtchi qualified for the tournament. Nepomniachtchi won both the Russian Superfinal and the European Individual title in 2019. He also won the Tal Memorial in 2016 and was a member of Russia’s gold-medal winning team at the 2013 World Team Chess Championships. With a rating of 2774, he is currently ranked fifth.

Must Read: 2020 Chess World Championship Betting Odds: Magnus Carlsen is the Favorite

The 2019 FIDE World Cup was won by Teimour Radjabov. The Azerbaijan native will be competing in the Candidates Tournament for the third time. In 2011, he was eliminated in the first round by Vladimir Kramnik, and in 2013, he finished eighth. Radjabov is ranked ninth overall, with a rating of 2765.

Anish Giri qualified for the tournament by having the highest rating for the 12 rating periods between February 2019 and January 2020. The Dutch grandmaster finished fourth in his first-ever Candidates Tournament appearance in 2016, producing 14 draws.

Wang Hao is competing in his first Candidates Tournament. Wang is the fourth Chinese player to break the 2700 ELO rating mark, and he won the FIDE Grand Swiss Tournament in 2019 to qualify for this tournament. With a rating of 2762, the 30-year-old is ranked 12th in the world.

Kirill Alekseenko is the tournament’s wildcard entry. He earned the wild card by finishing third in the 2019 FIDE Grand Swiss. Alekseenko is the tournament’s lowest-ranked chess player, with a rating of 2698.

As previously stated, these eight grandmasters will compete for the right to face Carlsen in the world championship later this year. There are currently no betting odds for the Candidates Tournament, but the odds to win the 2020 World Chess Championship are available. Take a look at these:

Magnus Carlsen-300
Fabiana Caruana+550
Liren Ding+700
Alexander Grischuk+2000
Ian Nepomniachitchi+2000
Anish Giri+2800
Hao Wang+5000
Teimour Radjabov+5000
Kirill Alekseenko+12500

Who will triumph?

Carlsen ended Viswanathan Anand’s four-year reign as world champion, which began in 2013. He defeated Anand again for his second title and has since won two more. Carlsen broke Sergei Tiviakov’s world record of 110 consecutive wins in classical matches in January. Carlsen, the defending champion, is one of two finalists in the championship final. The rest of the field will compete in a double round-robin format to determine Carlsen’s next opponent. This means that betting on Carlsen is already a 50-50 bet. Given his recent dominance, it’s difficult not to back Carlsen. He’s at the top of his game, and at 29 years old, the Norwegian Prodigy is still in his prime.

Magnus Carlsen is the favorite.

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