Will Blizzard's virtual collectible card game Hearthstone be a part of the Winter Olympics 2030?
It's not a question we've asked ourselves. But now you can bet on it happening.
Betway claims to be the first major bookmaker to launch a dedicated eSports betting portal. We've heard of Betway - its bread and butter is football, tennis, cricket and golf, with all the in-play bets you'd expect nowadays. It runs flashy ads like the one below, which you've probably seen if you've watched Sky Sports at some point in the last 12 months:
Now Betway's getting into eSports betting, and it looks like it's taking it seriously.
I've had a dig around Betway's eSports website, and most of the bets we've seen are as you'd expect, with tournaments for PC games Counter-Strike: Global Offensive, League of Legends, Dota 2, StarCraft 2 and more available. It uses the same "Betslip" system as the rest of the site. For what it's worth, eSports appears slotted on the left of Betway's main sports page, underneath beach volleyball and above floorball. But there's a fairly prominent link at the top of the site.
You can get odds on various Counter-Strike: Global Offensive teams to win during the ESL UK tournament tonight. You can even get 20/1 on any map to finish 16-0.
But our favourites are the specials, which, surprisingly, revolve around the Winter Olympics 2030, which doesn't even have a confirmed host country yet.
Hearthstone is 99/1 to be a Winter Olympics 2030 sports. Dota 2 is 79/1. CS:GO is 49/1. Poor World of Tanks is 499/1. Worth a punt? You've only got 15 years to wait to find out.
"Hearthstone has well over 30 million players and is a growing force in eSports," Betway's Alan Alger told Eurogamer. "There are many Winter Olympic sports that don't have participation figures of even a 10th of Hearthstone's.
"To become an Olympic sport, a sport needs to be 'widely practiced in no fewer than 40 countries and on three continents' according to the Olympic Charter. Hearthstone ticks both boxes with ease.
"We feel that Hearthstone to be part of the 2030 Winter Olympics isn't out of the question, in fact odds of 99/1 are probably far too generous."
It looks like Betway is testing the waters with eSports betting, and it could become big business. Since the beginning of the year, Betway has tripled its eSports team, it says, to accommodate growing interest. eSports regularly features in the daily top 10 sports for turnover, too. It's already taken high four figure bets on Counter-Strike: Global Offensive, Dota 2, League of Legends and FIFA, it says.
Would you bet on eSports?