|Blitz Showdown Between Karpov, Seirawan|
|By Jennifer Shahade|
|June 13, 2012|
SAINT LOUIS, June 13, 2011 -- Both classical games in the Anatoly Karpov-Yasser Seirawan match were drawn, but not without two long fights. The match between legends is underway at the Chess Club and Scholastic Center of Saint Louis from June 10-13. In addition to the two classical games already played, two rapid games (June 12) and 10 blitz games (June 13) will determine the winner of the “Clash Between Kings.”
Karpov’s defensive skills have been stellar in both games. After achieving a strong position on the White side of the Slav in game one, he erred and Seirawan won his weak c-pawn.
However, Karpov’s two bishops vs. a knight and a bishop advantage allowed him to keep the balance, and the game was drawn after almost 70 moves. In the post-game analysis, both players indicated that the draw was not as difficult to achieve as commentators and fans believed.
In the second game Seirawan was on the white side of a Queen’s Indian defense.
Karpov deviated from main line theory early on with 5…d5 (instead of …Bb7 or …c5) and ended up with a passive and unpleasant position. Seirawan was pressing all game. After the game, both players agreed that trading rooks with 34.Re1 gave away most winning chances and that 34. g4 was better.
The rapid portion of the clash between legends, Anatoly Karpov and Yasser Seirawan ended in two draws. In the first game, Karpov achieved a dominant position in the same line of the Slav that they played in round one of the classical match. In the post-game commentary, Karpov and Seirawan agreed that Yasser's main hope was Karpov's time deficit. In the end, Karpov accepted Yasser's draw offer in a better position due to his rapidly dwindling clock. He also pointed out that even though black was worse in the final position, he had no active plans, so Seirawan's position was easier to play quickly.
In the second game, Karpov chose the Lasker Defense of the Queen's Gambit Declined. This surprised Yasser, and he did not get much with the white pieces. The game was drawn after 34 moves.
A 10-game blitz showdown will determine the winner of this tight match. Tune in to livestream.com/uschess starting at 1 p.m. local/2 EST for live commentary by GM Ben Finegold and WGM Jennifer Shahade.
The players are also scheduled to host an extended live press conference via Livestream at 4:30 p.m. local time today, and chess journalists, bloggers and fans worldwide are encouraged to visit the Chess Club's Livestream channel and log in using Facebook or Livestream to submit questions. Questions can also be submitted using the hashtag USChess (#USChess) on Twitter.