Game 12 of the world chess championship ended in a draw, with both Carlsen and Caruana at 6 points each. Which sends the championship to the tiebreaker round which is set to be played tomorrow(Wednesday).
For the risk averse grandmaster, there was an incentive to head to tiebreakers: The 1 million pound prize fund is divided 60-40 to the winner, unless the match is decided in tiebreakers, in which case, it’s 55-45.
It is speculated that Carlsen can very well take 55 percent of the money, and the faster the tiebreakers get, the bigger Carlsen’s advantage.
To support the above theory, lets have a look at FIDE’s Elo ratings. Carlsen’s rapid rating is 2880, and his blitz rating is 2939; Caruana’s rapid rating is 2789, and his blitz rating is 2767. We also need a measure of how likely draws are in these faster formats. For that, let’s use historical data. In last year’s World Rapid Championship, for example, about 30 percent of the games were draws. In last year’s World Blitz Championship (which Carlsen won), about 20 percent of the games were draws.
Combining those facts and running a bunch of simulations give the following probabilistic picture of the world championship tiebreakers. Carlsen is a roughly 80 percent favorite — again, based only on the quantitative factors mentioned above. These simulations do not care about Caruana’s strong form in the 12 lengthy games that have been played so far or his confident utterances during recent post-game press conferences. (In real life, the two have played 23 speedier games against each other, according to Chessgames .com— Carlsen won 13, Caruana won six and four were draws.)
The tie-breaking games begin Wednesday at 10 a.m. Eastern, and a world champion will be crowned.