Friday, November 16, 2018

World Championship - Round 6 update

Carlsen's overall chances edged upward after another pair of draws. That's because the rapid tiebreaks favor him.


Tuesday, November 13, 2018

Monday, November 12, 2018

World Chess Championship - Game 2 update

Carlsen's chances have improved slightly. After 2 draws, a rapid tiebreak becomes a bit more likely. Of course, Carlsen is the favorite in the tiebreaks.


Tuesday, November 6, 2018

World Championship forecast: accounting for the rapid tiebreaks

The forecast for the 12 game match is:


If it ends in a draw, there will be 4 rapid tiebreak games. While rapid tournaments are becoming increasingly common, they are still very much in the minority. So the rapid forecast is based on a much smaller sample. With an ordered logit, I estimated the draw rate to be about 44%. That is in line with the draw rate in the Paris and Leuven rapid events in the Grand Chess Tour.

In rapids, Carlsen is well ahead of Caruana. The champion's rapid rating is 2880; the challenger stands at 2789. Many people have stated that Carlsen is the huge favorite in the tiebreaks. They're right, but Carlsen's chances might not be as great as they think:

Rapid Tiebreaker

Carlsen's chances of winning the rapids are only about 2 in 3! I expected that his chances would be higher than that. Here's why an upset is possible: (1) There are only 4 games in the tiebreaker. Upsets are more likely in shorter matches. (2) The draw rate is lower than in classical. Upsets are more likely to happen when the draw rate is small. Both of these reasons were explained in my recent ChessBase article.

If the match is still tied after the 4 rapid games have been played, it goes to blitz. If the first 2-game blitz match fails to crown a champion, another pair of blitz games follows. This can continue until 5 blitz matches have been played. Though Caruana has a real chance of surviving the rapids, blitz is another story. Carlsen's blitz rating is 172 points higher. 

Blitz: 2-game tiebreak match

Putting it all together:

The percentages in the total column don't sum to 100%. That's because there is a tiny chance that the players will still be tied after 5 blitz matches.

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Monday, November 5, 2018

Shenzen 2018

The tournament is a round robin with 6 top players. Ding Liren has climbed up to #4 in the world. How long can he maintain his unbeaten streak? My forecast for the tournament:


An updated forecast for the world champion will be up soon

Thursday, October 18, 2018

Hoogeveen Matches

There will be two 6-game matches at the Hoogeveen Chess Tournament. US Champ Sam Shankland will take on Peter Svidler while Fedoseev will play against Van Foreest.


World Championship forecast

Magnus Carlsen shed a few more points. However, he would be the heavy favorite in the rapid tiebreaks.