Reports | October 23, 2008 21:30

World Championship: 7th game drawn

Kramnik-Anand, Game 7Update: video added.
The second half of the Anand-Kramnik World Championship match has started with a draw in 37 moves. Playing the white pieces again, Anand got a slight advantage in an ending but by sacrificing a pawn Kramnik forced a liquidation to a drawn pawn ending. It's 5-2 for Anand now.

Today Kramnik finally managed to surprise his opponent in the opening a little, but just a little. The Russian deviated from previous games already at move one, by going for 1...d5, but it didn't really get him any closer to getting some winning chances; Anand just played too solid today. Perhaps even a bit too solid, because the Indian might have missed a study-like win in the ending today - as GM Erwin L'Ami informed us. It needs to be checked.

Yet again Kramnik's team couldn't convince us as far as the opening preparation is concerned: following the first rapid playoff game from his match against Topalov, he deviated with 15...Bg6 but just a few moves later he was looking at a position where White was just slightly better and not even close to getting into trouble. A Benoni or a Leningrad Dutch were suggestions I've seen online for getting practical chances with Black...

Realizing this wasn't going to be his day, Kramnik accompanied his queen exchange with a draw offer, but there he actually overestimated his position: he had not yet fully equalized yet, as Anand showed in the next few moves. The challenger needed some accurate moves to prove that it was indeed a draw - and this time he did find them.

So now there are five games left, with three White games for Kramnik. It's safe to say that tomorrow is the moment of truth: if he hadn't retained his title yet, Anand will do it tomorrow if he doesn't lose. A first win for Kramnik might unsettle the Indian to some extend, and who knows how he will react. Nobody really believes in Kramnik's chances anymore (including Anatoli Karpov and Evgeny Bareev, who arrived in Bonn today) but if he wins tomorrow, anything can happen! As always, you'll be able to watch the game live here at ChessVibes.


The players are back on stage for the second half, which might not last six games


Because the colours were changed, Vladimir Kramnik had to play with the black pieces again


Following a game from the Topalov-Kramnik match, Anand got a slightly better ending?¢‚Ǩ¬¶


...but went for "safety first" and decided to make if a comfortable draw

Here's the 7th match game:

Match score:

Name Nat. Rtg
Anand IND 2783
Kramnik RUS 2772

Here's our playlist of videos. If the game 7 video doesn't show, please try removing your temporary internet files, and then (Ctrl-)F5.


(Note that the comments below this article started during our live coverage of the game)

Peter Doggers's picture
Author: Peter Doggers

Founder and editor-in-chief of, Peter is responsible for most of the chess news and tournament reports. Often visiting top events, he also provides photos and videos for the site. He's a 1.e4 player himself, likes Thai food and the Stones.


Zenman's picture


Fritz 11 suggests 32. b5 c3 33. Kd3 NC5 + 34.
Bxc5 Rxc5 35. Rxc3 Rxc3 + 36. Kxc3 and gives an advantage to Kramnik but for me it will end perhaps draw a match!

Vladimir Patzernand, very patz (me)'s picture

Kramnik and Anand does not for disturbing each other.
Sometimes, this play-and-stand up is for relax a few. You need maintain your concentration all the time. You fight is on the tableboard and your opponent influences your way to play.
If you make the move, stand up immediately, you can concentrate at that position.
You will see more times the positions than the person in front of you.
The words of Danailov does not deserve consideration.
He is not a good person.

peter's picture

@Tyche This is old news. Please read this article to get an update on that.

Frits Fritschy's picture

Deeply sorry,
I'd better check the position myself.

billy's picture

31.g4 =+ Anand is better his king is more active and his plan is to attack
c4 if 31...a6 32.b5!? and then move his king to d4

Bharat's picture

This is a dead draw. Anand should offer it and they should both go home.

Ash's picture

so whites plan is Kd4 and Rxc4. Should black exchange rooks after Rxc4 or win the h3 pawn with Rh8?

Ole's picture

Rybka3 (running on a 8 core system) gives the position after 31. g4! with + 1.00
that's very close to +-
And since I cannot finde a clear mistake in Kramnik's play, it seems obvious to me that white's position was all way long much better (because of very poor Nd7) and with Vishy's very accurate play (always Rybka's top move so far) it seems he might get his 4th win today!
Once more this development of things (even if Kramnik manages to survive today) shows that his draw offer was really not gentlemen-like at all!

Sasile's picture

Wishing vishy a win. Is there no law against kramk wierd attitude

Katata's picture

The first Line would give (according to shredder:)
28.e4 Nc5 29.Bxc5 bxc5 30.Kd3 d4 31.Rf2 Red8 32.Rfc2 Rb8 33.Rb1 Rdc8 34.b4 Kh5 35.Rb3 g4 36.hxg4+ Kxg4 37.Rbb2 cxb4 38.Rxc8 Rxc8 39.Rxb4 Rc7 40.Kxd4 Kf4 1/2-1/2

Jonas's picture

I'm watching foidos and once again kramnik leaves the stage after evey move he made, one again Anand is siting there alone. Is it normal? Is it appropriate behaviour ? Now i see why Topalov complained about it, Kramniks behaviour is really weird.

Katata's picture

17th move :any pawn break in the center would weaken Black's position: 15)...f5 seems to be more sound than 15)...Bg6.

Vinayak's picture

exchange of queens on the cards...

Ash's picture

maybe Kramnik has a little pocket chess set in his trousers (like fischer) and is analyzing in the meantime ;-))

Ole's picture

I don't like black position at all after Qxb4
isn't there a clear plan with b3 for white here?
19.b3! idea simply Ba3 (covering f8) and then f4 Rf3- h3 and mate on h-file?
of course this plan takes some time, but what can black do against it?

VB's picture

Semi final challenger match to me sounds OK.

Rubinstein's picture

Again i have to say that People in here who thinks that Kramniks drawoffer after Qxe3 ins an insult, know nothing about chess. Nothing.

Manu's picture

@katata :
You are folowing a dead thread , that letter was not accurate translated , and was corrected by the media , and the Bulgarian Federation said that calling the WC a semifinal would be an insult etc etc.
On the other hand this is Anand - Kramnik match , why are we talking dirt about Bulgarian federation an Topa?
I know why , because Kramnik is losing , thats why.

Christos (Greece)'s picture

I hope the match Kamsky-Topalov does not take place at all.
Topalov should be out of this cycle. He had dug a hole for Kramnik (whom he was sure he would beat) and proposed that the loser of Elista 2006 would not play in Mexico. But then he lost and fell in the hole himself. The fact that he got this deal to play in a semifinal is outrageous (it is a semifinal because if he wins two matches he becomes World Champion).
I have never been a fan of Kamsky, but Kamsky won a huge 128-player knock out tournament in Khanty-Mansyisk 2007, defeating among others Svidler, Carlsen, Ponomariov and Shirov! The deal initially was that he would get a match with the World Champion. Then the deal changes and he gets a match with ... Topalov. What did Topalov do to "qualify" for this match? He lost a match to Kramnik.

ajay's picture

dead as a dodo DRAW

Katata's picture

To Ole, My objection is that computers evaluation of the endgames is a little weak.
Try to give to Rybka a theoreretical draw for instance Rook againts Rook and two pawns and it will evaluate it > +1.00.
Any Rook ending seems to be a draw and requires still analyses.

I invite you Mrs Ole to give to Rybka the position of Fisher-Spassky in their 1st game in 1972 WCC after Fisher sacrifices his bishop.
Deep analys proved later (mathemathecally) that Fisher had the ability to force a Draw.
I guess that Rybka would evaluate the position in qesution to be > 1.5 for White even if it runs 10 hours, because it needs to go to depth 40 or more !!!

Ole's picture

@ Erwin L'Amis Line

33.Kd1!? Kf7 34.Kc2 and now of course not Nc5?? Rf1+ and after forced rook exchange white is indeed winning, but simply 34...Ke8! looks like a draw to me.
black position looks really terrible, but I don't find a way to win after Ke8, looks like black is always in time to create counterplay or play Nc5 with the known foretress.

Sander's picture

Now 33.Kd3 Nc5+ 34.Bxc5 Rxc5 35.Rxc3 Rxc3 would be a clear draw, although stupid computers evaluate it +1,5 or so.

ajay's picture

Kd3 Nc5+
Bc5 Rc5
Rc3 Rc3

Aljechins Cat's picture

Either Kramnik or Anand must have missed something.
33.Kd3 - Nc5+ 34.Bxc5 -Rxc5 35.Rxc3 - Rxe5 36.Rc6 looks winning.

raj's picture

nothing to think here...............

JUST Kd3..............and advantage anand...............

nothing to think............

Katata's picture

To Ajay ... Bravo ... Kramnik playeg 25)...Kg6

RajeshV's picture

Rc7 would at least lose an exchange after RxC7; BxC7 Rc8; Rc1; Nb8 with idea of Na6; So, white wold lose the rook for the Knight - unless I'm missing something

dev's picture

wow !
the 2 kings are in action, trying hard to cover alternate sides !

Ash's picture

the maneuver Rc3 and Ba5 or if b6 is played the white king can guard the rook in time

RajeshV's picture

Ok, looks like I *did* miss something -- Rc3 with the idea of Ba5; so, b6; then a5 etc... but yeah why would white play such a series of moves to get into a mess?

ajay's picture

I do not think Kramnik is aiming for a draw

Katata's picture

To Debashish,
the live action is here

ajay's picture

Kg6! next

Katata's picture

To Tyche,
In June 2007 FIDE announced that Topalov would get special privileges in the World Chess Championship 2009 qualifying cycle, while Kramnik, if he lost his title in 2007 (which he did, coming second behind Viswanathan Anand), would get a rematch with the champion in 2008.

According to FIDE, there is no use of words like semi-final....

I guess that the Bulgarian Federation is still under the Choc of the toillets. Topalov and his second's behaviours in 2006 give you an idea of the Bulgarian chess federation mentality. Since they (Topa and Daino) managed to accuse Kramnik of dirty things they are able to do more.
I find the bulgarian chess federation statement natural.

raj's picture

Rc4 for black now............

true.....its a draw, it seems! though anand has a bishop to knight

Aljechins Cat's picture

Sorry- Rxc3 is naturally a draw. So perhaps Anand has missed something?

peter's picture

Thanks for letting us know, Chaital!

Christos (Greece)'s picture

If you also think that Kramnik was receiving help, I will not argue a lot here. I can only say that the help was not good enough because he could have been mated in three. If Topalov misses a mate in three he should blame himself only and not invisible enemies.

Brian Wall's picture
Ole's picture

I am really shocked...
I am just a 2300 player, but it took me 2 seconds to understand what Kramnik's a5 was all about.
idea: a5 b5(??) with a foretress.
Therefore bxa5 bxa5 Rb1 still with excellent winning chances

...and Vishy just played b5.
Did he really miss the fortress idea or has he seen deeper?!

I think after bxa5 white chances to win the game are very very good.
Now it looks dead drawn to me.
Strange game anyways.

Michel83's picture

@ Adriano

Kramnik also won strong tournaments BEFORE Elista. So, following your logic, how comes he won many tournaments in the last 15 years?

So what you are basically saying is that in the about 15 years Kramnik is playing world class chess ALL the tournaments he won (Linares, Wijk etc.), the matches he won (Kasparov and Topalov) and all the games he won against other world class players (Ivanchuk etc.) he only won because he cheated by going to the toilet (even in the early 90s, when Computers were not that strong yet).

For 15 years Kramnik cheated in all the tournaments and games he won? Wow, I am happy you are there to explain that to us, now it all makes sense...

Face it, Fischer crushed Taimanow, Larsen and Spasski and now Kramnik gets crushed by Anand, that has nothing to do with cheating. What is the reason Taimanow and Larsen couldn't win one game? Yes, Fischer was too strong. Seems like this time Anand is too strong.

Topalov is a great player but he is not unbeatable. I do not understand why you can not accept that Topalov lost against Kramnik and need to find cheating-apologies. Why are you not just happy Kramnik loses and Topalov gets another chance?
Some people have too much hatred inside of themselves...

Sander's picture

This is quiet, though strategical imbalanced position. The kind of position Kramnik likes, i guess. Still one of both players need a lot of effort to get winning chances..

Katata's picture

Why 25)Rc7 is not good ??? with the idea of doubling rooks.???

dev's picture

fritz 10 says 25....b6

val's picture

at last chessvibes resumed updating

dev's picture

25)Rc7 would have lost the control over C file.

Katata's picture

To Dev. Good. So you are not weak players I guess ..

Ash's picture

i think Rc7 would lead to a bishop knight endgame after exchanging one pair of rooks and pinning the bishop to the rook...

I cant say if this B vs N endgame is in favor of Kramnik or Anand. Engines should be asked ;-)

Ole's picture

I just saw at the live webcam that Kramnik actually offered a draw(!) after Qxe3 (that's also the reason, why Vishy spend app. 5 min for fxe3).

I think this draw offer is (very close to) an insult in many ways.
1.White is clearly better because of the very bad Nd7.
2. Anand is white and Kramnik hasn't solved all opening problems yet
3. Kramnik is at -3 in the match and the last thing he should think about is making a fast draw
4. the spectators who paid for this game (in Bonn as well as all over the world) deserve a full game and not a draw 3 moves after they left known theory!

Thank God Vishy declined and just plays chess!!
I really hope Kramnik loses today. Such a weird draw offer would drive me crazy if I was Anand!


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