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Vladimir fights back October 9, 2006

Posted by dorigo in chess, games, news.

Yesterday the tenth game of the World Chess Championship was played in Elista. Kramnik set up a classic Catalan opening with the white pieces. Topalov failed to equalize, and slowly drifted in a difficult middlegame. He seemed to be able to hold, but he blundered horribly with 24….f6??, and soon resigned.

Very precise play by Kramnik, who I myself had been quick to give for dead just one day before, after the second consecutive loss. It had looked as if Topalov’s recovery, helped by the forfeit given by Kramnik to game 5, had destroyed Kramnik’s confidence, but things were not as easy, it now seems.

The match is now tied. With two more games to go, the score is 5-5. Should the two remaining games end in one more point per player (one win each or two draws), four more games will be played with a faster time control. A part of me desires such an outcome… It would be spectacular and bloody. But it would be much better for chess if Kramnik prevailed in the classic time control games – this way, the forfeit would be quickly forgotten; otherwise, should Topalov win with a +1 margin, it would be too easy to question the result, question the title of World Champion, and make the “unification” of the title a unborn child of FIDE’s attempts.

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