By Donald Duff in New York
The games seem to be getting shorter and shorter. After Thursday’s 51-move, draw challenger Serjey Karjakin, and defending champion Magnus Carlsen, yesterday agreed to a draw after 32 moves of game six of their Fide World Championship title match, here at the Fulton Market Building, South Seaport, Manhattan, New York.
This means that the players are tied on three points each in the 12-match series, where the winner will be the first person to score six and one half points.
Once again, the Ruy Lopez was employed, and the players quickly played the first set of moves, and Karjakin might have thought he had won a piece when he played Ke6 on move 19, forking the black queen and rook, but Carlsen found a brilliant reply in Qd5 threatening mate, and was subsequently able to move the rook to safety.
Thereafter, the game quickly moved to an opposite colour bishop endgame, with both players having double pawns on the b file.
The next few moves saw the rooks being traded, and subsequently, the doubled pawns were exchanged at which point the players agreed to call a halt to the proceedings.
Carlsen said afterwards, “These lines are quite forcing and fortunately I was familiar enough with it to be okay.”
Carlsen who spent less than 20 minutes on his clock, was asked about his short day at the office.
“Well, it’s good to have a short day and obviously if I can hold out as black, then I’m in decent shape.
Today, not much really happened apart, and I was not out of preparation for a very long time.”
Asked what he needed to do to get the first win, Carlsen said he was more focused on playing better than he did the previous day, then adding,
”I’m happy to have done that. We’ll see if I get some chances.”
Karjakin praised his opponent,”It was not my plan, but of course Magnus played beautifully in the opening and I could not do anything.”
He added, “I can say that Magnus’s opening preparation is underestimated by many players.”
He too admitted that the lines were forced, and said the two players were fighting in every game.
When asked to sum up the match so far, Karjakin said,” Well, the score is equal, but if you look at the games, in some games we could have been a little bit ahead.”