The Final Stretch in London: Kramnik or Carlsen
December 14, 2009
nakaslidegraphic.jpgAfter six rounds of the London Chess Classic, Nakamura has yet to post a win. This must be particularly disappointing to our US Champion because in this tournament, a win is equivalent to three points. GM Ian Rogers, reporting from the scene, told CLO that it's an error to call the 3-1-0 tabulation, "Sofia rules" and that "soccer scoring" or "Bilbao scoring" (in honor of the first high-level tournament in which it was used) are more accurate terms.

After today's game, Nakamura said, "What can I say? I was Black and I tried to win but I never got any winning chances."

Howell said, "He played his first 10 or 15 moves in less than a minutes so I was really worried. I think I must have had a big advantage somewhere but I couldn't find anything."

Carlsen was in trouble today but wiggled out with a draw.


In another crucial game in the fight for first, Kramnik prevailed over GM Nigel Short.


Carlsen now has 12 points (3 draws, 3 wins, 0 losses), while Kramnik has 11 points (2 draws, 3 wins, 1 loss.) This gives Kramnik an advantage compared to traditional scoring systems: if Kramnik wins tomorrow (he plays our US Champion Nakamura) and Carlsen only draws (against Nigel Short), he will finish ahead of Magnus. According to traditional tabulation, a draw for Carlsen would clinch at least a tie for first.

Catch tomorrow's games live on the official website or on the Internet Chess Club at a new time two hours earlier, 7 AM EST.