Dannemann: A quick draw at halftime

10/6/2004 – Seven of the fourteen games of the classical chess world championship have been played, the last was a 21-move draw, coming after title holder Vladimir Kramnik surprised his challenger Peter Leko with an unusual move order in the Queen's Gambit Accepted. Leko did not feel at home in the new opening and went for the draw. Game, pictures and video report.

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Game seven: quick draw in 20 moves

It's half-time at the Dannemann World Chess Championship in Brissago, 7 out of 14 games have been played, and the score between title holder Vladimir Kramnik (Russia) and his challenger Peter Leko (Hungary) is even. Both have 3½ points – Kramnik won the first, Leko the fifth game of the match. If it ends in a tie Kramnik retains his title. The prize fund is one million Swiss Franks.


A view of Brissago from the Centro Dannemann

“I’m sure, that the second half of the match will be a fight now”, said Leko (25) after today’s game, that ended in a draw after three hours and 21 moves. The 29 year old Kramnik said: “It’s a very difficult match. Now the tension will grow from day to day.”


Leko carefully registered Kramnik's move order in the opening

In game seven Leko tried 1.d4 again. The reigning classical chess world champion chose a rare move order and sprang the first surprise: after nine moves the position from the Queen’s gambit accepted was on the board, with a small difference: White had already played a4. Kramnik used a weak b4 square for his knight and wanted to blockade the isolated pawn d4. Leko did not feel at home in the new opening and decided to simplify the position. After 13.d4-d5 he could only hope for a small advantage. But Kramnik played a strong defensive move, 16…Bc8. White was forced to go into an endgame where his activity is just enough to compensate for Black’s bishop pair. A draw was agreed. Kramnik now has one extra game with White in the second half of the match.

 
01
02
03
04
05
06
07
08
09
10
11
12
13
14
Score
Vladimir Kramnik
1
½
½
½
0
½
½
Peter Leko
0
½
½
½
1
½
½
3½

Leko,P (2741) - Kramnik,V (2770) [D16]
WCh Brissago SUI (7), 05.10.2004
1.d4 d5 2.c4 c6 3.Nc3 Nf6 4.Nf3 dxc4 5.a4 e6 6.e3 c5 7.Bxc4 Nc6 8.0-0 cxd4 9.exd4 Be7 10.Be3 0-0 11.Ne5 Nb4 12.a5 Bd7 13.d5 exd5 14.Nxd5 Nbxd5 15.Bxd5 Nxd5 16.Qxd5 Bc8 17.Rfd1 Qxd5 18.Rxd5 Be6 19.Rb5 Bf6 20.Nf3 b6 21.axb6 ½-½


A rare sight: Kramnik's second Miguel Illescas in the playing hall


Leko's wife Sophie with seconds Vladislav Tkachiev and Vladimir Akopian

Contacts and further information

Rolf Behovits
Press Officer World Chess Championship
CENTRO DANNEMANN
Via Ruggero Leoncavallo
CH-6614 Brissago
rbehovits@chessgate.de

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