Monday 14 October 2013

What is it about the Kings Tournament?

A few years I suggested that the 2007 Kings Tournament in Romania was possibly the most boring tournament ever. The organisers invited a number of chess legends to play (Anderssen, Ribli, Mecking Portisch etc), and they played in a kind of legendary way, by agreeing to a large number of short draws. The 11 player round robin saw 80% of the games drawn.
Since then the organisers have attempted to improve on the amount of fighting chess by inviting younger and more dynamic players. This years event includes Caruana and Ponomariov, but the crosstable has a familiar look to it. Caruana is leading the event on 3.5/5, but is the only player above 50%. In fact the only other player to score a win is Nisipeanu, who shares second place with Ponomariov, who has drawn all his games so far!
Now I'm not saying this event compares with the 2007 version, as the games here have been much more hard fought, but I'm wondering if there is anything in the water that keeps the players from inflicting too much damage on each other.

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