The brilliance of Viswanathan Anand has had a major impact on chess across India. Betting on chess, particularly in tournaments where Anand is competing, is therefore very popular right now.
Anand is without a doubt the biggest name in the game when it comes to chess in India, but the sport is great to bet on as it can liven up matches by a significant degree.
Newcomers to betting on chess may well be unsure of how to get started, however. With that in mind, here is our complete guide to betting on chess in India - read on for all you need to know.
The history of chess can be traced back a long way in India's history. The game is thought to have originated from the Indian game chaturanga, which was played before the seventh century.
Chaturanga itself is also thought to have been derived from a range of strategy games that were played in East Asia, such as xiangqi (China), janggi (Korea) and shogi (Japan).
Chess as we know it today started to be played in the 19th century, with the rules of the game having changed a great deal since it was first invented. Nowadays, chess is played by two players on a checkerboard. There are 64 squares that are arranged in an 8x8 square grid.
Each player starts with the same set of pieces, which includes a king and a queen, as well as other pieces such as pawns. The aim of the game is to take the king of the opponent. This happens when the opponent has nowhere they can move the king where it will be safe.
Despite the king being the key piece, it is actually the queen that is the most powerful due to a higher array of potential moves. Capturing the opponent's queen is therefore seen as a priority, due to the fact it increases a player's chances of winning the game.
Chess is famous for its games taking place over a long period, although sometimes there are speed limits in place in order to achieve faster outcomes. The sport is extremely strategic and tactical, with players needing to be able to map out potential outcomes of every move.
Expert chess players are known as Grandmasters and it takes hundreds of hours to play in order to be able to reach that level. Interestingly, computers can now be programmed to play chess at an extremely high level and they have even beaten the world's best players.
Chess may not be the most obvious sport to bet on, but if you want to place a wager on the outcome of a major tournament or chess competition, what do you need to do?
Placing a bet on chess in India works in a similar way to any other type of sports wager, such as a bet on the outcome of a cricket match in the Indian Premier League.
When betting on the winner of a particular chess event, selecting the predicted winner works in the same way as betting on the winner of a tournament such as football's Premier League.
After deciding what to bet on, the next step is to decide what stake will be used. For bets that have a high chance of winning, players may want to put down a higher stake in order to try to maximise their profits. But if there is less confidence about a bet winning, smaller stakes might be a better option.
A variety of chess leagues and tournaments are likely to be available to bet on in India, so let's take a look at some of the most popular of them in the next section of our ultimate chess betting guide.
Chess is not the most popular sport to bet on in India, but there are a few different competitions that are likely to be of interest for anyone considering betting on chess.
One of these is the Tata Steel Chess Tournament. This event, which takes place in January each year in Wijk aan Zee, the Netherlands, was where Indian chess star Anand went on a run of 70 matches without a defeat between 1998 and 2004 when he was at the top of his game.
Sometimes known as the Wimbledon of Chess, Magnus Carlsen is the player who has won the Tata Steel Chess Tournament more than any other player in the world of chess.
Taking place every two years, the Chess Olympiad is one of the most popular chess competitions to bet on. Having been held since 1924, the Chess Olympiad has a long and proud history dating back to failed attempts to get chess included within the Olympic Games. Teams representing nations around the world compete in the Chess Olympiad, which makes it different to a lot of other chess events where players represent themselves as individuals only.
It is the World Chess Championship that captures the attention of the world the most for this game. Taking place each year, the event sees the defending world champion take on a challenger - the winner of a Candidates Tournament.
The next World Chess Championship is set to take place in 2021 and will see the reigning World Chess Champion, Magnus Carlsen, take on a challenger who is yet to be determined. It will be a best-of-14 match, giving chess fans the opportunity to bet on a lot of matches in the event.
But for those who are keen to place bets on the next World Chess Championship - where can you find markets to do so?
Chess markets can sometimes be a little difficult to find on Indian betting sites. But when there is a top event in the sport, such as the World Chess Championship, there are likely to be a lot more options for those in India who want to bet on the potential winner.
Inevitably, the popularity of Indian chess icon Anand means there are likely to be a lot more betting markets at Indian betting sites on chess events where he is one of the players.
Here are some of the top Indian sports betting sites that will have chess markets:
Chess remains quite a niche sport to bet on, but the popularity of Anand due to his huge success over the years means betting on chess is a decent option for fans in India.
It is also worth pointing out that one of the world's top female chess players, Harika Dronavalli, also hails from India. She might well help to inspire a whole new generation of chess fans. Betting on chess in India could therefore become even more popular in the near future.