Norway’s Magnus Carlsen retained his world title on Friday in Dubai after his challenger, Russian grandmaster Ian Nepomniachtchi, made the final mistake in a series of mistakes that sent the match only Their once became a relatively easy victory.
Carlsen’s victory came in the 11th game of an event that had been scheduled for the last 14 games. The final score is 7.5 to 3.5 points, with each win worth one point and draws worth half a point.
Nepomniachtchi’s defeat in the final game completed one of the worst falls in a title match in chess history. After the first five matches ended in a draw, Nepomniachtchi has lost four of the last six. His last three defeats were mostly the result of self-inflicted injuries, as Nepomniachtchi did. fatal and relatively simple error in each of them.
In the final game, the players’ chances were equal until Nepomniachtchi decided to hastily advance in front of the king to attack one of Carlsen’s pieces, causing him to be counterattacked. Carlsen really missed out on the best sequel, which could have forced Nepomniachtchi to abandon his queen to avoid scrutiny, but still aim for a rook-and-pawn ending where he has a worthy advantage tell.
Carlsen eventually promoted one of his pawns to queen, and Nepomniachtchi resigned shortly after.
The turning point of the match was Game 6, an epic struggle of 136 winning moves by Carlsen that lasted 7 hours and 45 minutes. It was the longest match in world championship history and clearly caused physical and psychological harm to both players, albeit more difficult for Nepomniachtchi.
After retaining his title, Carlsen pointed to Game 6 as the pivotal moment. “That laid the groundwork,” he said. “The final score is probably a bit more deviated than it could be.”
Nepomniachtchi admitted that his downfall was unprecedented. “Okay, I’ve lost some stupid matches, but never so many in such a short time,” he said, adding that he had no idea what had happened. “If I knew, I would do something about it.”
Carlsen took in $1.2 million for his win, and Nepomniachtchi took home $800,000.
Carlsen compared his win this year to 2013, when he beat India’s Viswanathan Anand to become world champion. The win rate for that match, the best of the 12, is similar, 6.5 to 3.5.
This was Carlsen’s fifth win in a world championship match. He has now held the title for eight years, longer than his predecessor Anand, who won from 2007 to 2013, but half the time of Garry Kasparov, the modern record holder, who has held the title. this from 1985 to 2000.
Carlsen seemed exhausted and not too excited after the victory in the last match. He said, “It’s hard to feel that immense joy when the situation starts to get so comfortable.”
As runner-up in the title match, Nepomniachtchi was seeded into the next candidate tournament, which will feature eight players, to select the next challenger for the world championship. When asked if his experience in the title fight has helped him, he said he hopes so, before adding, “Experience is never easy.”
https://www.nytimes.com/2021/12/10/sports/magnus-carlsen-chess-world-championship.html Magnus Carlsen World Chess Champion