It may already be unique in a number of ways but the upcoming World Chess Championship match between Magnus Carlsen and Viswanathan Anand is set to take the game of chess into uncharted territories. The match, which will be played from November 9 to 28, will be the first chess world championship ever to be televised live across the country.
All India Chess Federation (AICF) CEO Bharat Singh Chauhan told TNIE that DD Sports had already secured the global telecast rights to the match. “Every day, the game will be telecast live for six hours on DD Sports. We will produce the content and will be the sole broadcaster. This will mark the first time that a world championship match would be telecast live across the country in its entirety.
“We hope that this move will facilitate thousands of chess-lovers across the country to follow the game and that it will help popularise the game. DD Sports is a channel that is available in all homes in the country and we will be able to reach a whole new audience,” he said.
He added that there were bids from private broadcasters as well, but Doordarshan was selected because of its reach. Leading chess players would provide commentary, he said, adding that there were also plans to stream the game live on the internet.
Doordarshan Additional DG Ranjan Thakur said that the development represented a significant coup for his organisation as well. “Usually when we telecast cricket or some other sport, we share broadcast rights with a private broadcaster. We are forbidden from telecasting it on channels other than DD1 and DD News. This often leaves DD Sports without any original content to telecast. But in this case, we are the sole holders of global rights,” he said.
He confirmed that there was interest from other countries for telecasting the match and that Doordarshan was negotiating with a Norwegian channel, which wanted to buy telecast rights for that country.