World chess championship is 10 weeks away but there's a deadline this Sunday for the two players to sign the contract. The challenger, Vishy Anand, seems to be agreeable to the various terms, but the champion, Magnus Carlsen, isn't. The match is scheduled to take place in Sochi, which many will remember was the venue for the recent winter Olympics. It's also not far from the Crimean Peninsula.
Carlsen has applied for an extension of the deadline, as he's currently playing in a big tournament and doesn't want to be in detailed negotiations over contracts, commercial interests and so on right now. The international chess federation has rejected that application, demanding an answer this weekend or the title will be forfeited as it would be in boxing. There is more to this than meets the eye: the sponsor for the event Carlsen is playing in was someone close to Garry Kasparov's recent unsuccessful campaign to get presidency of the international chess federation. Kasparov is also credited with the development of Carlsen into the world number one. Russia wants the match and FIDE's board is a supporter of the establishment there.
Carlsen does have form for sticking to his guns, refusing to participate in the candidates cycle (which determines the challenger for the world title match) because he didn't agree with the format. It was the cycle after that he participated in and won. Kirsan Ilyumzhinov the president is not one to back down, either, with many chess players comparing him to Sepp Blatter.
It's got very nasty and very public. It's about far more than the match itself and Carlsen won't fear losing the title this way; he's still the best in the world and has plenty of favour in Europe and beyond.
Vishy Anand is 4.25 on marathon bet to win the world title match this year. Scuy is 3/1 with Anand as "tournament winner" and the shouty red man is 9/4...ahem...
Anand would likely play Sergei Karjakin (although that would be interesting as he is a Ukrainian by birth but decided a few years ago to represent Russia...) if Carlsen were dethroned. It would be a fairly even contest, although I'd expect experience to make the Indian favourite.
Is this something the bookies can call a void bet or is there value to be eked out?
Will be posting some FIBA bball stuff for the world champs once i got on myself. Spent a while talking to jaffa about it last night and my brother who is a basketball coach for a living. He really follows the euroleague etc outside of the NBA as the rules to the international game are different to the nba so a lot of the stats/specials bets will not follow NBA trends so to speak as the shot clock is bigger/length of game different/slightly different rules as well.
I will be going through the stuff today and will try and post sometime later today.