Chess Betting

Chess is a tactical board game that dates back as far as the 6th century. Remaining to stay ever-popular over 15 centuries is no mean feat, but chess now has a whole new audience to play with. Online betting has revolutionized and reinvigorated so many sports and chess betting has been one such market that has prospered. The tactics and strategic elements provide a level of intrigue that entice punters into a market they may never have utilized before.

Chess Betting in Canada

Chess is extremely popular in Canada with an estimated 20% of Canadians playing a game at least once a year. Most of these will be played with family or friends but for several thousand chess is a serious and competitive game. The Chess Federation of Canada was founded in 1872 and has undergone many name changes before reaching its current iteration. The CFC organizes tournaments throughout the year and keeps competitor rankings updated. 

The biggest event in the Canadian chess calendar is the Canadian Open Chess Championship which was first hosted in 1956 and has been hosted every year since 1973, usually in the height of the summer. Kevin Spraggett is the most decorated Canadian Open Chess Champion with eight titles between 1983 and 2000. He was also declared World Open Champion in 1983. Canada still has several grandmasters competing at the highest level with the likes of Evgeny Bareev, Eric Hansen, and Bator Sambuev flying the flag for Canada or the world stage.

Popular Chess Bets

Due to the nature of chess, it’s not a game that can offer an extensive range of markets. Some bookmakers will offer a request a bet feature for particularly niche bets you may want to place but in general, chess bets are limited to the following.

Outright Winner

Probably the most common market for chess betting is the outright winner. The outright winner is your chance to correctly predict the overall outright winner of a specific competition and reap the rewards you should be correct. 

Picking a Player who will NOT win the Championship

In the same way that you can bet on a specific player to win a tournament, you can also bet on an individual to not win the title. Given the number of players in a tournament, the odds in these markets might not be overly generous, but if you have a feeling that a favorite will underperform, it can be worth delving into.

Match Winner

Alongside outright winner markets match winning markets are also popular. Instead of forecasting the eventual winner of a tournament, you are required to pick out the winner of a specific match. In chess there are three outcomes; Opponent A win, Opponent B win or a draw. The option of a draw ensures betting odds are favorable.


You can bet on several individual matches under one bet slip called a parlay or accumulator. The outcome of each match must correspond with your prediction for you to win your bet. Parlays are a great way of winning higher value bets as there are multipliers applied due to the increase in variables.

Popular Chess Tournaments

Everyday players from all over the world compete with one another, whether recreationally or competitively. Whilst most of these events are obviously not available for betting on, there are still plenty that are open to punters. Let’s take a look at some of the biggest chess events you should keep an eye out for.

Chess World Championship

The World Chess Championship takes place every other year and is the most eagerly anticipated of all the chess tournaments. Held in either September or October, the World Chess Championship is open to all competitors, although there are separate events for the Women’s World Chess Championship and the World Junior Chess Championships. Being declared World Champion is the most sought-after prize in the game and with overall winnings of more than C$1.5 million, it is the most lucrative tournament in chess.

Grand Chess Tour

The Grand Chess Tour runs from August to September and sees a whole host of events scattered across the world. There are usually between five and events in the tour every year with the calendar fluctuating continually, however, some of the major events that have featured in the Grand Chess Tour include the London Chess Classic, Paris Grand Chess Tour, and the Saint Louis Rapid & Blitz.

Chess Olympiad

Despite the similarity in name, the Chess Olympiad bears no relation to the Olympics, and instead is a team event that features all the top teams from across the world. The event is usually held in August and runs for several days. Each match-up will see an eventual winner which adds to an ongoing points tally with the winner being the team to have amassed the most points by the conclusion of the event. The Olympiad consists of teams of four for both men and women.

Betting Tips for Chess

Chess is a huge tactical battle that can be difficult to play, however, luckily betting on chess isn’t quite so complex. Here, we will look at a few of the things to bear in mind when placing bets on this age-old game.

ELO Rating System

There is a rating system called the ELO rating system which is an exceptional tool for cross-examining players and picking out strengths, weaknesses, and alternative skill sets that may favor a particular opponent.


Form and confidence play a key role in chess like it does in many other games and sports. A run of good form breeds confidence and players feel invincible. A few bad results and your mind starts to play tricks as you doubt decisions you intend to make. Checking over players recent form can tell you what kind of mind frame they may be in heading into a particular tournament.

Head to Head

Just as important as form are the head-to-head results. Some players will have a psychological or tactical advantage over a specific opponent. Once this psychological barrier has been established it can become an increasingly difficult hurdle to overcome. Seeing how two opponents have fared against one another previously can be crucial in correctly predicting the right outcome of a match.

Popular Canadian Betting Sites for Chess

Chess betting is a fairly niche market, however, although in its infancy, there are still many bookmakers that will provide you with a great selection of markets on all the major events. Finding a safe and secure betting partner for your chess strategy may take longer than with other sports, however, once you have found one or two that you are comfortable with, you will be able to get stuck into your bets and hopefully, find some winners. Here we are going to look at some of the leading bookmakers in Canada for chess betting.


Betsafe, as the name might suggest, provides a safe and enjoyable betting experience for all of its customers. With a fluid web design that’s user-friendly on phone, tablet, and desktop you can navigate to the wide range of markets they have available with ease. They also accept a wide range of deposit methods that include Mastercard, Neteller, Skrill, PayPal and many more. Betsafe also doesn't discriminate so whether you are a new or existing customer there are a whole range of promotional offers for you to take advantage of.

Mr Green

The Mr Green betting interface provides a slick, user-friendly platform that is easy to navigate. Considering Mr Green are relatively new to the online betting industry, they are able to offer extremely competitive odds across their entire range of sports. As well as great value odds, there are also welcome and loyalty bonuses for you to use to help you maximize your profit. Mr Green provides a safe and secure experience that matches any other online bookmaker with all the correct licensing and security software installed.


10Bet offers great value betting odds, a huge range of promotional offers and first-class customer service to deliver the ultimate betting experience. They also provide an extensive range of markets across a huge range of sports including chess, so you can navigate their user-friendly mobile app or website to place your next chess bets. 10Bet accepts a huge range of payment methods from the likes of PayPal, EcoPayz, Neteller, Skrill and most major card payment services. They also provide an efficient withdrawal system with a commitment to have all winnings back in your account within 72 hours.

Chess Betting FAQs

Are chess bet promotions available?

Yes. Some companies will provide broad promotions that encompass chess markets and others will offer specific chess betting offers tailored to an upcoming event. Keep your eyes open for these offers.

Where can I watch live chess matches?

Some leading bookmakers will provide live chess streams to punters who have placed a bet on a particular match. It’s worth checking the live stream policies before betting to avoid disappointment though.

Do all bookmakers provide chess betting markets?

Not all no, however, many bookmakers offer a request-a-bet service and most decent betting companies will provide you with odds if you request it if they don’t already provide those relevant chess markets.