Monday 28 November 2016

Last game strategy

So the World Championship Match comes down to game 12, although playoffs are a distinct possibility. And it is the existence of playoff games that have certainly changed how final World Championship games are now played.
In an earlier time, a tied match meant that the Champion retained the title. Therefore, if the match reached game 24, it was a do or die game for at least one player. In the case of the Karpov v Kasparov matches, Kasparov won the title in 1985 by winning game 24 (and the match 13-11), and retained the title in 1987 by repeating the feat, but in this case drawing the match 12-12.
In both cases there was a sense of anticipation about what strategies both players would employ, but in both games, Kasparov did not deviate from his normal style, a wise decision as it turned out.
I suspect this will also be the case for game 12 of Carlsen v Karjakin, as a switch to rapidplay games may be agreeable to both sides. Probably 1.e4 will be played although there is also scope for a real surprise. Back in 1987 I can remember see "Guess the Opening for Game 24" competition at the Melbourne Chess Club, and while most choices were pretty main stream, one enterprising soul plumped for 1.g4!

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Double fianchetto slow system, maybe Nf3/g3/Bg2/O-O except that it's been played so much by top players in the last year anyway

Idea would be to keep the tension, and like with 1987, that opponent would be overawed by the occasion, and move too slowly at the start, then fade into time trouble.