Sunday, 11 December 2011

We can draw - if we want to?

I've noticed something interesting with top tournaments that have restrictions on agreeing to draws. In the early rounds of the event, there seems to be a number of decisive games, and the draws that do occur seem to happen well past move 40. Later in the tournament however, the draw ratio increases, and repetitions (or dead positions) seem to occur before move 40.
Now I know the plural of anecdote is not data (and I've presented nothing to support my claim*) but I'm wondering if the 'effortless draw' is becoming part of the Super GM bag of tricks. Not the 'I will draw no matter what you do' style, but more the 'I'll head for a sterile but safe position, and if you want you can join me' kind of play.

(* Round 6 of the London Chess Classic had 4 drawn games, which kind of surprised me, given the number of decisive games up until now. Of course Round 7 had 3 wins, just to provide a quick counter example!)

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