Reports | October 26, 2008 19:42

World Championship: 9th game drawn

Anand-Kramnik, game 9Update: video added.
He came very close to winning today, but in the end Vladimir Kramnik had to accept that his ending agains Viswanathan Anand was a draw. After the 9th game the Indian is now leading the World Championship match 6-3, and just needs a draw to retain his title.

While many expected a not too interesting game today (Anand was supposed to play ultra solid and cruise to match victory by drawing twice, and Kramnik would have no energy left to put up serious resistance) it was completely the other way around: Kramnik invited Anand to a sharp fight in the Semi-Slav, and the Indian went for it by retreating his bishop to h4 after Black's h6, allowing the complicated lines of the Anti-Moscow Gambit.

At first it looked like Anand took his opponent by surprise yet again, by going for a rare side-variation, but this time Kramnik had done his homework and soon obtained a small advantage. His position got better and better, and at some point the world champion decided to sacrifice a pawn, but still there was one moment where Kramnik could have reached an almost winning position.

But in timetrouble the Russian almost missed a mate in one and was so shocked by it that he decided to exchange queens and in the resulting ending it was not too difficult for Anand to avoid the last few traps Kramnik put up.

And so chances are high that tomorrow will be the last match day in Bonn, although Kramnik stated that he will ?¢‚Ǩ?ìfight till the last draw.?¢‚Ǩ?


As the end of the match is getting closer, the theatre seats are sold out now


The chess board says which day the game is played


The players shake hands for their ninth encounter


The number of photograpers is going up again?¢‚Ǩ¬¶


?¢‚Ǩ¬¶because a photo of a potentially decisive game is always good to have


Kramnik: What about a nice Semi-Slav today?


Anand: Yeah, why not


And so there was soon an Anti-Moscow on the board


Close, but no cigar

Here's the 9th match game:

Match score:

Name Nat. Rtg
Anand IND 2783
Kramnik RUS 2772

Here's our playlist of videos:


(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.


Mathew's picture

I think Kramnik might have a win in him before the match finishes. For his sake I hope he gets atleast 1 win even if it is highly unlikely.

karthik's picture

I wish Anand wins this in style

TC's picture

If Anand play e4 then Kramnik will answer with c5!!!! Since a petroff is no good for Kramnik, then we will see a fighting game today! :)

Popuscu (Bulgaria)'s picture

The only player who can play for a win in every game is Topalov.
I think that the other semi final (Topalov-Kamsky) would be more interesting than this semi final.

John (The Very Amateur Chess Player)'s picture

Drawing is a way for the entertainment of the match to be further prolonged.

It's easy to predict a draw as "d4" has done its magic already, so there's little in trying to surprise Kramnik at this point.

We can only hope the draw will not be a short one either and that Kramnik will try to keep the pieces on the board so come move 40 there's something left to play.

TC's picture

Popuscu, Topalov is a great player, but he lost to Kramnik even after Kramnik forfeit a game.

So Anand and Kramnik is the true world championship match.

Topalov and Kamsky match is actually not a semi-final either, it is the final for deciding a challenger for the next world champion match which is most likely to be Anand.

Popuscu (Bulgaria)'s picture

We claim that this semi final is illegal since Kasparov-Kramnik match 2000 is illegal. The reason is that Shirov is the worthy challenger, he indeed defeated Kramnik in the candidates match.

I am afraid that Kramnil will not be able to challenge the title again: the FIDE grand-prix system is too hard for him.


TC's picture

sorry, I should say the final for deciding a challenger to the next world champion which is most likely to be Anand.

John (The Very Amateur Chess Player)'s picture

So, will it all end today?

Which d4 variation will Kramnik choose? :-)

Sumit Balan's picture

Kramink will probably draw this,i think he has resigned the match in his mind already.

TC's picture

I hope Kramnik fights back!! Don't want this match to end this early!! =)

TC's picture

Just on the side point............. I think Wang Yue is playing like Magnus Carlsen........ Squeezing wins out of thin air.......... His playing strength really surprised me........ He is now number 10 in the world, and his age is same as Radjabov!!!

Sumit Balan's picture

I hope this will be 1-0 Anand !

KK's picture

Or Kramnik: 1-0. Some fight is better than boring draws, we all know that Anand has won so why not some fireworks?

An Anand supporter :)


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