WCC2014-9: Carlsen still +1 after quick draw

The game was not nearly as gallant as this photo. Beautiful shot showing the tense moments building in the match! Photo by Anastasia Kharlovich.

Not much excitement in today’s game, but the 20-move draw in the Berlin Defense has set the stage for what is to be a grand finale of the 2014 World Championship. There is still an exciting subplot with Magnus Carlsen clinging to a one-point lead and facing two whites in the last three games. Viswanathan Anand’s team will be working to produce a stunner tomorrow before the rest day. The idea may be to steal a game before the break and put more pressure on the champion.

What will the respective teams be planning in terms of preparation? Will Anand vie for 1.d4, 1.e4 or 1.Nf3? Will we see a slugfest tomorrow or a position grind? Will Anand go for an all-out assault and apply pressure? Tension is mounting and it is not certain who will crack first. Carlsen already escaped after Anand missed a catastrophic blunder in game seven and was lethargic in game eight. Former world champion Garry Kasparov gave his assessment on both players.

and on Anand…

Despite the quick draw today, both players can be assured that the game will reflect a competitive bout. There has been much more intrigue than the Chennai match, one that was decided early. Carlsen admitted that Anand was a bit more prepared that he was today. The champion also admitted that his play in the match has been a bit uneven despite his +1 lead. Anand on the other hand has to force the issue, take risks and evoke complications. We are in for quite a ride.

Video by GM Daniel King.

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