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A decisive game seems round the corner

Although the deadlock continues after five draws into the World chess championship title-match, Ian Nepomniachtchi seems to be gaining a psychological edge over Magnus Carlsen.

In Wednesday’s fifth game, Carlsen was on the defensive from the opening and eventually escaped with a draw. Nepo was left regretting his choice of move on the 20th turn. This could encourage Nepo to be more proactive in the coming games.

Gaining rating points

So far, Nepo has not appeared intimidated by the champion at any stage. The Russian looks very well-prepared for the Norwegian favourite and willing to test him on various counts. In fact, with every draw, Nepo gains a rating point while Carlsen loses one.

“It’s becoming clearer and clearer that it’s going to be hard for either of us to break through,” said Carlsen after the fifth game.

Over the next three days, Carlsen will play twice with white pieces and that could end the ongoing deadlock before the next rest day on Monday, before the ninth round.

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Printable version | Jan 17, 2022 4:52:37 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/sport/other-sports/a-decisive-game-seems-round-the-corner/article37812066.ece

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