WCC Anand v Kramnik Game 7
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36...Rxc3+ DRAW AGREED! There seems to be no way for Anand to make use of his extra pawn. A clever idea by Kramnik to save the game! Anand now leads 5-2 with 5 games left to play. Game 8 is tomorrow.
32...c3 Kramnik is trying to set up a blockade. The arrangement of pawns makes it very difficult for either king to penetrate into the opponent's half of the board. This will make it harder for Vishy to convert his advantage to a win if rooks are exchanged. Chess engines are blind to such considerations!
31...a5 Stops the white a-pawn advancing, but now 32.b5 would fix the black pawns as targets.
Apparently Kramnik offered a draw after 21...Qxe3 earlier, which explains why Anand thought for a few minutes about recapturing! Good for Anand for declining the draw and playing on!
31. g4 Anand keeps Kramnik's King at bay. Anand now seems to have a slight plus thanks to Kramnik's awkward knight.
28. b4 Anand prevents the knight coming to c5!
Clocks: Anand 1:14 Kramnik 0:46
27...b6 Kramnik supports a possible move of the knight to c5 in future.
Kramnik is having a long think on his 25th move, but the position looks pretty level.
24...Kf7 25. Kf2 Since we are now in the endgame, the Kings can safely join the fray.
22...f6 23. Bd6 Kramnik attacks the white pawn chain, but Anand's bishop has free reign over the dark squares.
21...Qxe3 22. fxe3 Kramnik has more or less achieved equality.
19...Rac8 Kramnik aims to control the c-file. His knight doesn't have many good squares - c6 would be good, but it would also block the c-file.
17...Qb6 18.Nxb4 Qxb4 Kramnik decides to allow Anand to exchange knight for bishop. Anand's remaining bishop is hampered by his central pawns.
Kramnik has achieved a French Defence style structure, but with his light squared bishop outside the pawn chain. Anand is likely to regroup his pieces and attack on the kingside.
So, Kramnik avoids the Nimzo-Indian and we have a Slav defence. Not as sharp as the Semi-Slav favoured by Anand, but should still be an interesting game.
Welcome to live coverage of the 7th match game between Vishy Anand and Vladimir Kramnik. Vishy now leads 4.5-1.5, having won 3 games and drawn the rest in the first half of the match. Many commentators have now written off Kramnik completely and it's not hard to see why. Kramnik rarely wins with the black pieces, and he has never beaten Anand with black before at normal time controls. Now he must win at least 3 games out of 6 in the second half of the match to survive. Does he have a plan B for this eventuality? Has he prepared anything to play as black for must-win circumstances?
Whatever opening he tries today, Kramnik needs to up his game to stay in the match or it could be over soon without even going the distance. Come on Vlad - show us your fighting spirit!