2018 World Championship in London

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Richard Bates
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Re: 2018 World Championship in London

Post by Richard Bates » Thu Nov 29, 2018 1:30 pm

Alex Holowczak wrote:
Thu Nov 29, 2018 10:20 am
Christopher Kreuzer wrote:
Thu Nov 29, 2018 1:03 am
Does this inability to win two of those two matches without the need for a tie-break impact his overall legacy and place in the historical chess pantheon in any way?
In my mind it shows that chess has moved on significantly, and there are now a number of players capable of playing as well as the World Champion for a prolonged period of time, rather than the old days where over a match of this length, you could be reasonably sure the stronger player would outplay the weaker player. This is a reason why the format of the World Championship cycle is unsuitable in modern chess, in my opinion.
This smacks to me of misanalysing what has happened to support a conclusion you want to come to. For a start, close World Championship matches between closely match players is hardly a new thing. And often when the gaps in official ratings were far more than they are today. One could point to higher numbers of draws, but then there are also plenty of counter examples from the past. The difference was that matches required certain numbers of wins as well as being longer.

And let’s not forget, how easily Carlsen has won is not an issue, the fact is he has won every match.

We’ve just had a match where the two best players in the World (and most closely matched in history) have had an incredibly close match. If you believe in the accuracy of the rating system why would we expect anything else?

You want to replace it with a system where there is a high chance that neither player would even reach the final.

NickFaulks
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Re: 2018 World Championship in London

Post by NickFaulks » Thu Nov 29, 2018 2:04 pm

Richard Bates wrote:
Thu Nov 29, 2018 1:30 pm
We’ve just had a match where the two best players in the World (and most closely matched in history) have had an incredibly close match.
Just to quibble, perhaps for the sake of it, the destination of the title was decided in a format where the two players were not at all closely matched. The first point to be decided is whether we want the Champion to be the player who is best at standard chess or at some kind of chess triathlon. My feeling is that the latter has crept in by default.
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Christopher Kreuzer
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Re: 2018 World Championship in London

Post by Christopher Kreuzer » Thu Nov 29, 2018 2:21 pm

Two quick questions:

(1) Does anyone recognise the person making the opening move here? (scroll down or search for 'guest of honor'). Picture is also here.

(2) Does anyone know who make the opening move ('ceremonial'/'guest of honour') for Game 2? Picture of the opening move is here.
Last edited by Christopher Kreuzer on Thu Nov 29, 2018 3:39 pm, edited 2 times in total.

NickFaulks
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Re: 2018 World Championship in London

Post by NickFaulks » Thu Nov 29, 2018 2:23 pm

I hope Carlsen will play in the forthcoming ( we are assured ) World Rapid Championships. Having retained his main title by defeating a relatively indifferent performer in that format, I want to see whether he can validate this result against the world's best. I have to say that I would make him favourite to do so, since he does seem able to rise to any important occasion.
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Alex Holowczak
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Re: 2018 World Championship in London

Post by Alex Holowczak » Thu Nov 29, 2018 2:37 pm

Richard Bates wrote:
Thu Nov 29, 2018 1:30 pm
Alex Holowczak wrote:
Thu Nov 29, 2018 10:20 am
Christopher Kreuzer wrote:
Thu Nov 29, 2018 1:03 am
Does this inability to win two of those two matches without the need for a tie-break impact his overall legacy and place in the historical chess pantheon in any way?
In my mind it shows that chess has moved on significantly, and there are now a number of players capable of playing as well as the World Champion for a prolonged period of time, rather than the old days where over a match of this length, you could be reasonably sure the stronger player would outplay the weaker player. This is a reason why the format of the World Championship cycle is unsuitable in modern chess, in my opinion.
This smacks to me of misanalysing what has happened to support a conclusion you want to come to. For a start, close World Championship matches between closely match players is hardly a new thing. And often when the gaps in official ratings were far more than they are today. One could point to higher numbers of draws, but then there are also plenty of counter examples from the past. The difference was that matches required certain numbers of wins as well as being longer.

And let’s not forget, how easily Carlsen has won is not an issue, the fact is he has won every match.

We’ve just had a match where the two best players in the World (and most closely matched in history) have had an incredibly close match. If you believe in the accuracy of the rating system why would we expect anything else?

You want to replace it with a system where there is a high chance that neither player would even reach the final.
Lots to unpick here, but I think you're wrong for several reasons.

My points are that:
1. Objectively the players at the top are better than they were 20-30 years ago, and it is demonstrably true that the likelihood of a drawn game increases the higher the ratings of the players. Take the Women's World Championship Final in Khanty - four games but two decisive results; of course their ratings were of the order of 200 to 300 points lower.
2. The top 10 in the world are more closely matched now than they were in the Kasparov/Karpov eras, which again makes a draw a much more likely result in tournaments like this.

There's a difference between a close World Championship match where all games are drawn, and a close World Championship where there are decisive games. Changing the format doesn't increase the likelihood of decisive games (or at least, if it were a knockout, you would have more decisive games in the early rounds than the later rounds), but what it would do is reflect the fact that there are more players of a similar standard now than has been the case in the past.

In the Women's World Championship just completed; the Final pitted the #1 seed against the #3 seed. I proposed a format some way back where there wouldn't be a Final; it either ended based on the result of a Grand Prix, or the Candidates format was used for the Final. But in any case, so what? If the World #1 loses to the #64 seed in a 2-game match, does he or she deserve to be World Champion? If Magnus lost his protection to the World Championship match, if he could only finish 24th in the European Championship (and so failed to qualify for the World Cup), does he deserve to be World Champion?

Geoff Chandler
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Re: 2018 World Championship in London

Post by Geoff Chandler » Thu Nov 29, 2018 3:43 pm

HI,

"I agree that chess has moved on significantly."

And in the wrong direction.

"Objectively the players at the top are better than they were 20-30 years ago,"

I do not think so, they are not being asked to demonstrate a skill that has been removed from the game....read on.

First a case for champion draw odds returned.

In the two matches that Botvinnik drew and applied draw odds there were 24 decisive games from 48.
I think we all would have settled for at least 50% of the last 24 W.C. games being decisive.
(at moment it is a miserable two from the year 2016)

This will force the challenger to go for the champ instead of backing off and
looking forward to a nice pot and the lottery of rapids. It's like giving him a second chance.

Yes it favours the champion but he is the champion, lets give him something for winning the title in the first place.

Here I remind you that having draw odds is no guarantee a match will be drawn.
Botvinnik, (three times), Petrosian, Spassky and Karpov all lost their titles when
they had draw odds. None of the last three used draw odds to retain their title.

Kasparov applied it once at 12-12. That produced 8 decisive games including the dramatic games 23 and 24.

So history dictates draw odds does not always mean the champion draws his way to a title.
If he did then the match in question still produced excellent decisive chess with all
3 champions at one time or other being behind in the match.

3 of the last 5 W.C. matches have gone to tie breaks producing a pathetic
4 decisive results from 36 classical games.

The solution appears to be is re-set the old conditions.

What is the main difference from then till now. 24 Games?

Yes, but what real difference did that make. No keep the 12 game format, I fear that is here to stay.

It's the clocks!

Time increment. It was not in place back then and that affects how every
game no matter how many games are in the match. So we have a smoking gun.

Chess has not moved on significantly, it has gone backwards, our current top lot of players have become
deskilled in the art of clock management because we do not want the poor wee souls losing on time.

Take out all forms of increment, It's a cry baby option (chess politically corrected if you will)
It is only protecting a player who loses on time in a won position and that is solely their fault.

It is this molly-coddling and tampering with players clocks that is ruining the game.

Interesting to see Nigel Short wants faster time controls, so it appears he
too has identified where a solution may lay. And a solution is needed.

(Caruna's piece appeared very quickly after rapid game 3. Do you think it was penned in advance.)

Roger de Coverly
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Re: 2018 World Championship in London

Post by Roger de Coverly » Thu Nov 29, 2018 3:59 pm

Geoff Chandler wrote:
Thu Nov 29, 2018 3:43 pm

It is only protecting a player who loses on time in a won position and that is solely their fault.
Traditional World Championships didn't have a quickplay finish and just continued at x per hour. If you aren't going to adjourn and pause the game for analysis, you need a way to bring a game to a conclusion in a finite time.

You don't want nonsense like winning with a Knight and King against Knight and King, nor do you want arbiters expressing opinions on the quality of play judging "unable to win" conditions.

That leave increments. By all means, only bring them in at the very last stages of a game, either when they've gone past move 40 moves, 60 or some other landmark, or when one player is down to a low amount of time.

Reg Clucas
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Re: 2018 World Championship in London

Post by Reg Clucas » Thu Nov 29, 2018 4:17 pm

Geoff Chandler wrote:
Thu Nov 29, 2018 3:43 pm

our current top lot of players have become deskilled in the art of clock management because we do not want the poor wee souls losing on time.
If you don't use increments then sooner or later someone will lose on time, no matter how good the players are at "clock management". Chess should be decided by the position on the board, not by who makes the moves the fastest.

NickFaulks
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Re: 2018 World Championship in London

Post by NickFaulks » Thu Nov 29, 2018 4:31 pm

Geoff Chandler wrote:
Thu Nov 29, 2018 3:43 pm
Chess has not moved on significantly, it has gone backwards, our current top lot of players have become deskilled in the art of clock management because we do not want the poor wee souls losing on time.
To be clear, the 30 second increment was not introduced for the benefit of the players. It exists for the convenience of arbiters.
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Christopher Kreuzer
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Re: 2018 World Championship in London

Post by Christopher Kreuzer » Thu Nov 29, 2018 4:43 pm

Has anyone suggested that if a match is drawn, that the players share the title?

[Traditionally, this would be a big break, as the world title has never been shared, has it?]

Would need slight tweaks around a rematch. Maybe the 'junior' co-holder would have to go through the process again to be the next challenger? Or maybe another rematch before the next cycle (but how to fit that into the calendar)?

David Williams
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Re: 2018 World Championship in London

Post by David Williams » Thu Nov 29, 2018 4:48 pm

When I suggested having the tie break first
Geoff Chandler wrote:
Mon Nov 26, 2018 8:04 pm
No tie breaks before the match. The winner then has draw odds.
But now
Geoff Chandler wrote:
Thu Nov 29, 2018 3:43 pm
First a case for champion draw odds returned. . .
Have you changed your mind?

John McKenna
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Re: 2018 World Championship in London

Post by John McKenna » Thu Nov 29, 2018 5:37 pm

If, as I already suggested, Fab'd had the draw odds (no tiebreaks) then Mag'd have to've gone for a k.o. in 12 rounds.

Instead of saying things like - if Fab wants a draw no prob, but if he comes for me I'll go all in.

These days the challenger is the one skating on thin ice and the champ is king of the mountain.

Not really the answer to a question posed above (only up to and including the 2nd Karpov-Kasparov match in 1985) the percentage of draws by the champions in all recognized World Championships -

25% Steinitz
40% Euwe
41% Lasker
42% Tal
49% Smyslov
51% Botvinnik
52% Alekhine
52% Fischer
60% Spassky
65% Petrosian
71% Karpov
73% Capablanca
78% Kasparov

Note that the above percentages for Karpov & Kasparov aren't final since after 1985 they both played further games in the World Ch.

That probably isn't much use in the quest for a World Championship scheme that seems to be being conducted here for one that satisfies active members of this forum.

Agreement on that seems difficult here because people have different preferences for different formats.

My take on it is - you end up having to take whatever's on offer, or take up another pastime.

PS I think someone said, above, in the thread words to the effect that - with a few certain notable exceptions - the more recent World Chess Championships had not really increased the number of (grassroots?) players worldwide.

What about the effect of Anand playing for winning and holding the title on the numbers playing chess in India (or even England?)

The Chinese, too, are playing in relatively large numbers (male & female) probably due to their Olympiad teams' successes. A Chinese World Championship challenger/champion could increase those numbers even more.

Magnus is a great champ, and his compariots love him dearly but, after all, Norway has a pretty small population.

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Kevin Thurlow
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Re: 2018 World Championship in London

Post by Kevin Thurlow » Thu Nov 29, 2018 5:45 pm

Bear in mind that Botwinnik never won a match as defending champion, drew in 1951 and 1954, lost in 1957 (winning return match in 1958), lost in 1960 (winning return match in 1961), lost in 1963. Spassky and Fischer did not win a match as defending champion. So from 1948 until Karpov in 1978, only Petrosian won as defending champion.

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Matt Mackenzie
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Re: 2018 World Championship in London

Post by Matt Mackenzie » Thu Nov 29, 2018 6:10 pm

Kevin Thurlow wrote:
Thu Nov 29, 2018 5:45 pm
So from 1948 until Karpov in 1978, only Petrosian won as defending champion.
A remarkable achievement, which is I think more recognised now than it was at the time.
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JustinHorton
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Re: 2018 World Championship in London

Post by JustinHorton » Thu Nov 29, 2018 6:38 pm

Kevin Thurlow wrote:
Thu Nov 29, 2018 5:45 pm
Bear in mind that Botwinnik never won a match as defending champion, drew in 1951 and 1954, lost in 1957 (winning return match in 1958), lost in 1960 (winning return match in 1961), lost in 1963. Spassky and Fischer did not win a match as defending champion. So from 1948 until Karpov in 1978, only Petrosian won as defending champion.
Unless I am missing something, wouldn't that be from 1934 rather than 1948?
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