World Championship begins with quiet draw
And they are off!
The first game of a World Championship match rarely has much influence on the final result and more often than not serves as a way for the players to break ice and prepare to do battle in the next few games which are considered more critical.
This was the case today between challenger Ian Nepomniachtchi and title holder Magnus Carlsen. There were no surprises. Neither player took any risks.
The opening was very theoretical: a popular variation of the Marshall Gambit that has a well deserved reputation for being very drawish right from the outset. Black sacrifices a pawn in order to get rapid development and create the first threats.
The pawn has very little value, but at the same time Black’s threats are only enough to compensate for the pawn. The game will likely be drawn when the spectators begin to fall asleep…
Tomorrow will see game 2, with Carlsen playing the White pieces. There will be 14 games played, the first player to score 7.5 points is declared winner and World Champion. In case of a tie, several tie-breakers with reduced time controls will follow.
WCC#1 26.11.2021 (draw)