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MATCH STANDINGS
Carlsen - Karjakin World Championship Match

Magnus Carlsen9/16(+3 -1 =12)[games]
Sergey Karjakin7/16(+1 -3 =12)[games]

Chessgames.com Chess Event Description
Carlsen - Karjakin World Championship (2016)

Having earned and subsequently defended the World Championship title in his 2013 and 2014 matches against Viswanathan Anand, Magnus Carlsen was now confronted with defending his title against his childhood rival, Sergey Karjakin. Karjakin earned the right to challenge the title by winning the World Championship Candidates (2016) by a full point. This was the second title match to feature a champion and challenger who were under age thirty, after Kramnik - Leko World Championship Match (2004). Although the match was predicted by many to be a blowout victory for the Norwegian wunderkind, the tremendous defensive prowess of Karjakin transformed the contest into a grueling war of attrition that would test the mental fitness of both great modern masters.

While the best of 12 match started off slowly, with seven consecutive draws, Karjakin surprised many by winning the eighth game with the Black pieces, against Carlsen's rather uninspired approach to the Colle System. The reigning world champion refused to participate in the mandatory postgame news conference and caused a major controversy with his absence. However, in the tenth game, the "Mozart of Chess" returned with a vengeance, mercilessly pressing an advantage from the White side of the Ruy Lopez and levelling the score at one win apiece. When the last two classical games resulted in draws, the match entered the tiebreak phase.

The tiebreaks were conducted in the rapid time format, with draws in games 13 and 14 and an unexpectedly easy set of back-to-back victories for Carlsen in the fifteenth and sixteenth games. As a result, the far higher rated world champion retained his crown, but the tiebreak methodology stirred up significant controversy in the world of chess. Former world champion Anatoly Karpov, as well as American grandmaster Yasser Seirawan, objected to the rapid tiebreak, pointing out that the World Rapid Championship was the venue where that time control was rightly to be contested. However, while the world champion agreed that the tiebreak format was less than ideal, Karjakin insisted that he was pleased with the tiebreak format and, playing the part of a genuine gentleman and sportsman, insisted that he failed to utilize his preparation and performed well below his own ability during the tiebreaking phase of the match.

 page 1 of 1; 16 games  PGN Download 
Game  ResultMoves YearEvent/LocaleOpening
1. Carlsen vs Karjakin ½-½422016Carlsen - Karjakin World ChampionshipA45 Queen's Pawn Game
2. Karjakin vs Carlsen ½-½332016Carlsen - Karjakin World ChampionshipC78 Ruy Lopez
3. Carlsen vs Karjakin ½-½782016Carlsen - Karjakin World ChampionshipC67 Ruy Lopez
4. Karjakin vs Carlsen ½-½942016Carlsen - Karjakin World ChampionshipC84 Ruy Lopez, Closed
5. Carlsen vs Karjakin ½-½512016Carlsen - Karjakin World ChampionshipC50 Giuoco Piano
6. Karjakin vs Carlsen ½-½322016Carlsen - Karjakin World ChampionshipC84 Ruy Lopez, Closed
7. Karjakin vs Carlsen ½-½332016Carlsen - Karjakin World ChampionshipD10 Queen's Gambit Declined Slav
8. Carlsen vs Karjakin 0-1522016Carlsen - Karjakin World ChampionshipD05 Queen's Pawn Game
9. Karjakin vs Carlsen ½-½742016Carlsen - Karjakin World ChampionshipC78 Ruy Lopez
10. Carlsen vs Karjakin 1-0752016Carlsen - Karjakin World ChampionshipC65 Ruy Lopez, Berlin Defense
11. Karjakin vs Carlsen ½-½342016Carlsen - Karjakin World ChampionshipC78 Ruy Lopez
12. Carlsen vs Karjakin ½-½302016Carlsen - Karjakin World ChampionshipC67 Ruy Lopez
13. Karjakin vs Carlsen ½-½372016Carlsen - Karjakin World ChampionshipC78 Ruy Lopez
14. Carlsen vs Karjakin ½-½842016Carlsen - Karjakin World ChampionshipC50 Giuoco Piano
15. Karjakin vs Carlsen 0-1382016Carlsen - Karjakin World ChampionshipC78 Ruy Lopez
16. Carlsen vs Karjakin 1-0502016Carlsen - Karjakin World ChampionshipB54 Sicilian
 page 1 of 1; 16 games  PGN Download 
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Kibitzer's Corner
< Earlier Kibitzing  · PAGE 161 OF 161 ·  Later Kibitzing>
Feb-15-17
Premium Chessgames Member
  visayanbraindoctor: I posted this in another page but it properly belongs here.

I'm happy that Carlsen won the tie breaks in the end. He was in the same situation as Anand in his tied match with Gelfand. For the second time in chess history we could have gotten a World Champion that did so without properly beating the previous one in a classical match (had Gelfand or Karjakin prevailed in the quick game tiebreakers).

My thoughts regarding the quick game tiebreakers:

1. Ideally the Champion must have beaten the old one to be Champion.

2. I hate these FIDE quick game tie-breaks to decide the Classical Champion.

My suggestion (which I have previously posted on other pages) if the World Championship match ends in a tie:

Two additional classical games. The Challenger receives two Whites. If the match still ends in a tie, the Champion retains his Title.

This way the Challenger must beat the Champion in a classical game (not a quick game) in order to grab the Title, and in so doing win the match outright.

Now the above gives an advantage to the Champion. All he needs is a tied match, secured by drawing the two classical tiebreaker games, to retain his Title.

Giving two successive Whites at the end of the match to the Challenger gives an advantage to the Challenger.

So things even out.

We still retain the tradition of the Challenger beating the Champ to get the Title.

The Challenger gets to do it in a classical game, not a quick game.

Feb-15-17  SugarDom: Since we are discussing formats again, I think the best way to address the "draw" problem is to make the 25m/10s rapid format as the new "standard" chess.

In this generation, people are a lot more impatient. In the internet, you have 5-secs to get people's attention. The 5-hour game and match drawfest would simply keep chess unpopular in the internet age.

Of course, we can argue about preserving chess traditions, however, sooner or later the older generation will disappear.

Feb-15-17
Premium Chessgames Member
  alexmagnus: <Now the above gives an advantage to the Champion. All he needs is a tied match, secured by drawing the two classical tiebreaker games, to retain his Title.

Giving two successive Whites at the end of the match to the Challenger gives an advantage to the Challenger.>

You give me a million dollars. That's an advantage for me. I give you one dollar. That's an advantage for you. So things even out :D

Advantages have to be quantified.

Also, this is not a <classical> world championship. It's a <chess> world championship. The classical format is just the means to an end, not the end in itself. It's like as if the runners decided to determine who is the best overall (distance-independent) runner running <one> distance.

Feb-15-17
Premium Chessgames Member
  alexmagnus: <visayan> Assuming a draw rate of 64% and white advantage being 53-47, the champion has a 70% chance to defend the title in your tiebreaker.
Feb-16-17
Premium Chessgames Member
  alexmagnus: I shouldn't do mental math at 2 AM :D . It's 68.71% actually. Not that it changes much...
Feb-16-17
Premium Chessgames Member
  visayanbraindoctor: <alexmagnus: Assuming a draw rate of 64% and white advantage being 53-47, the champion has a 70% chance to defend the title in your tiebreaker.. I shouldn't do mental math at 2 AM :D . It's 68.71% actually. Not that it changes much...

Advantages have to be quantified.>

No I believe it can't be accurately quantified in this case. Whatever the win/loss and draw percentages vary from one event to the next. Tournament stats on this are probably different from match stats, and match stats differ depending on the type of match- a World Championship would be a different situation from that of a friendly match or even a Candidates Match.

In such a situation where the Challenger needs to win at least one game in order to be world champion, he is going to play more aggressively and I believe that the draw percentage taken from ordinary matches will decrease.

We get a scenario where one player has to win; and the other can merely draw. In such situations in the past, the player that has to win will play more aggressively, and may actually increase his chances for a win, against one whose end goal is a draw, and will accept a draw at first opportunity.

<SugarDom: Since we are discussing formats again, I think the best way to address the "draw" problem is to make the 25m/10s rapid format as the new "standard" chess.

In this generation, people are a lot more impatient. In the internet, you have 5-secs to get people's attention.>

I don't think it's impatience. Every generation has always played quick games. From what I have read pre WW2 masters in the US would regularly enter weekend quick game club tournaments. We just don't know much about these because they aren't well documented. However, it's possible that they played even more quick game tournaments than modern masters. At least for one world champion, Capablanca, the number of quick games that he played in such untouted tournaments may have far surpassed the number of classical games he played.

<we can argue about preserving chess traditions, however, sooner or later the older generation will disappear.>

They haven't disappeared since the time that the chess clock was invented in the Steinitz era. IMO they probably will continue long after we are both gone.

Feb-16-17
Premium Chessgames Member
  alexmagnus: Actually I argue the challenger will <not> play riskier in your tiebreak. Why? For the same reason why unlimited matches had quite an extreme draw rate: the fear of losing is bigger than the need to win. In your mode, if the champion wins the first tiebreak game, he defends the title. So the challenger will rush anything only in the second game.
Feb-16-17
Premium Chessgames Member
  perfidious: <alex: Actually I argue the challenger will <not> play riskier in your tiebreak. Why? For the same reason why unlimited matches had quite an extreme draw rate: the fear of losing is bigger than the need to win....>

Karpov - Kasparov World Championship Match (1984) is a case in point: after Karpov went up 4-0, he was more than content to play safely in order to secure the fifth and ultimately elusive sixth win, while the young challenger could 'cover up' with a series of fairly short draws played with either colour, secure in the knowledge that he was not risking anything.

Had Karpov played more sharply when up five games, he may well have won the match by something like 6-2 or 6-3; but that did not fall in with his plan of attaining the goal by playing it safe.

Feb-16-17
Premium Chessgames Member
  visayanbraindoctor: I forgot to add:

My proposal above is just a general rule in order to preserve the principle <We still retain the tradition of the Challenger beating the Champ to get the Title.

The Challenger gets to do it in a classical game, not a quick game.>

So the tiebreaker can be just one extra White for the Challenger. Or two as written above. Or even three or four. We could even vary further, say one Black followed by one to three Whites for the Challenger. Studies can be made in order to determine the best specific format (of Blacks and Whites) that can afford the Challenger a fair chance at winning.

IMO this would probably be welcomed by most of the chess world in terms of the sporting excitement it affords. Here we have the Challenger; forced to try all means to win in classical games against a sitting Champion that only needs to draw all the tiebreak games (or game). A real drama at the end of the match.

<alexmagnus> I disagree. It is the world championship and the situation is uniquely different. IMO the Challenger will play very aggressively in each game.

If he is intrinsically a better player than the sitting Champion, the odds will be further in his favor.

At least this way, we do away with the quick game tiebreakers, which I would reject in principle (if I were FIDE President, but I am not).

I do not think there will be much constructive discussion with you in this matter because you obviously do accept quick game tiebreakers (which I don't). There is nothing I can propose that would convince you to try under the principle that I accept.

Feb-16-17
Premium Chessgames Member
  visayanbraindoctor: <perfidious> I'm not sure if you read my posts above correctly. If you have inadvertently misinterpreted them, let me point out that it is not a case in point because the extra classical tiebreak games (or game) are limited; not an indefinite format. As you correctly say, in an indefinite format, they can continue drawing and drawing indefinitely.

In the format I'm proposing within say one to four games at the end of a tied match, the Challenger has to win more games than the Champion, but at the same time has more Whites in making the attempt.

Feb-16-17
Premium Chessgames Member
  alexmagnus: <visayan> I accept <rapid> tiebreakers. I have my trouble with Blitz and completely reject Armageddon (<any> Armageddon, including "classical" one - as Armageddon changes the rules of the game). Fortunately, blitz and Armageddon are quite improbable with current system) my estimate is one match in 30 years being decided by blitz and one in no less than 700 years being decided by Armageddon).

But I reject your favorite tradition for the very same reason as I reject Armageddon: it changes the rules of the game. It declares one player a winner in case of a draw. Base on the fact he ein against some totally different chap two or more years ago ("or more" if the previous matches were drawn too). Why should the challenger be somehow accountable for that other guy's play?!

Feb-16-17
Premium Chessgames Member
  alexmagnus: Based on the fact he won against some other chap*. Sorry if those typos made it unreadable :)
Apr-03-17
Premium Chessgames Member
  chancho: From Carlsen - Karjakin World Championship (2016)

<Anatoly Karpov, and American Grandmaster Yasser Seirawan objected to the rapid tiebreak (to decide a World Classical Championship match) pointing out that the World Rapid Championship was the venue where this time control was rightfully to be contested>

But back in 1998, apparently the venue was irrelevant for Karpov:

<Anand played Karpov in a 6 game match match. In the event of a 3-3 tie, the match would be decided by a series of 2-game rapid matches. Anand fell behind 2 games to 1 but summoned enough strength and won the sixth game to bring the match into overtime. Karpov, however, won 2 speed games and remained FIDE champion.>

Jun-22-17
Premium Chessgames Member
  GM Igor Smirnov: It truly was a great tournament! I've analyzed all the games of this wonderful event (including tiebreaks), check them out at http://chess-teacher.com/affiliates...
Jun-22-17
Premium Chessgames Member
  GM Igor Smirnov: Check out the top-5 most impressive encounters between Carlsen and Karjakin here - http://chess-teacher.com/affiliates...
Jul-14-17  The Kings Domain: chessgames should have included this in their History of the World Chess Championship page a long time ago.
Jul-14-17
Premium Chessgames Member
  Petrosianic: Yeah, at least two years ago.
Nov-24-17  The Boomerang: "For the second time in chess history we could have gotten a World Champion that did so without properly beating the previous one in a classical match (had Gelfand or Karjakin prevailed in the quick game tiebreakers)."

You forgot about Kramnik-Topalov 2006.

Nov-24-17  ughaibu: But Kramnik was the champion. Nevertheless, Steinitiz, Botvinnik and Karpov already make three, so how could it have been the "second time"?
Nov-29-17
Premium Chessgames Member
  tpstar: In case you missed it:

https://s.yimg.com/ny/api/res/1.2/S...

Nov-30-17
Premium Chessgames Member
  Petrosianic: In case we missed what?
Nov-30-17
Premium Chessgames Member
  Petrosianic: <You forgot about Kramnik-Topalov 2006.>

No, because Kramnik was defending classical champion in that match. Also, he beat Topalov in the Classical Games.

The FIDE Title, which Topalov owned, had changed hands in screwy ways many times.

Nov-30-17  Absentee: <Petrosianic: <You forgot about Kramnik-Topalov 2006.>

No, because Kramnik was defending classical champion in that match. Also, he beat Topalov in the Classical Games.>

If you don't count the forfeit. But they had to play rapids anyway.

Nov-30-17
Premium Chessgames Member
  Petrosianic: <Absentee>: <If you don't count the forfeit. But they had to play rapids anyway.>

I don't count the forfeit as a game. Only as a non-game. But even if we do count it as a game, and throw the Rapids out entirely, then Kramnik defended his title on a drawn match.

Dec-05-17  positionalgenius: <<IMO the mid 1990s probably was the strongest era of chess. Karpov was already declining but still playing at a level that could still get him to be Challenger in today's era. Kasparov was at this prime. Anand was at his early peak, and Kramnik was on the way up. So you had all of Karpov, Kasparov, Anand, Kramnik playing in the same tournaments at levels still close to their peaks.>>>

Respectfully disagree here. Karpov's true peak was from 1980-1990. By the mid 1990s he was starting to lose matches to significantly lower level players; Karpov wasn't at peak form by 1995. 1994 Linares not withstanding, which was an amazing performance, but look at Linares 91 and 93 for examples of his inconsistency in the 1990s.

I'll also easily claim that Anand didn't truly peak until well after 2005. He seemed to vastly improve his mental state the older he got, which is relatively rare. 1990s Anand was skilled, but also lost quite a bit to players he wouldn't lose to in his peak years.

A better case could certainly be made for Kramnik, but to me he's a player who has had two peaks: 1999-2004, and then 2009-2014.

In general Kasparov dominated the 1990s. I can't argue about the quality of chess, since many classic games were played in those years, but I'm not so sure that 2006-2013 weren't just as strong years.

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