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     Volume 4 Issue 63 | September 16, 2005 |

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Time Out

Playing for a draw chess

Draw is not a very exciting proposition. Players often reach a dead position with no possibility of either of them making any headway. Then comes the peace offer from one of the players and the point is split. Interestingly , chess is the only game where an agreed draw is allowed. The rules permit the players to make a few moves (with no aggressive intentions) and accept a draw, much like the cease-fire in war. This can be interpreted as something that deprives the spectators of the chance to watch a thrilling encounter. The results or the ultimate standings in a tournament can also be influenced decisively by these friendly draws. Attempts were made in the past to prevent such draws, but it has finally been established that there is no way to stop the players from drawing if they are happy with half a point.

The players are also influenced by the fact that a short draw means a rest day and conservation of energy for a crucial game. That said, there are masters who actually abhor the idea of drawing quickly. Bobby Fischer, Victor Korchnoi, Garry Kasparov and many of their followers never wanted to let their opponents garner the half point so comfortably. These blood thirsty masters always want a real fight. In fact, Fischer's main complaint against the Russians was that they exploited their numerical superiority in a tournament by drawing with each other. There might have been truth in what Fischer was saying, but then he was the kind of player who would grumble about almost everything on earth.

Fischer decided to relinquish the world title when FIDE refused to accept his demand that the player to win six games (draws not counting) be declared the winner of his match with Karpov in 1975. Fischer didn't play the match, but FIDE introduced the rule for the Karpov-Korchnoi match in 1977. So the American had his point.

Watch how Sultan Khan, the Indian chess sensation of the early thirties, leads his forces to a safe draw against World Champion Alexander Alekhine.

White-Alexander Alekhine
Black-Mir Sultan Khan[E15]
Prague ol 1931
1.Nf3 Nf6 2.c4 e6 3.d4 b6 4.g3 Bb7 5.Bg2 d5 6.Ne5 Nbd7 7.Qa4 c5 8.cxd5 Nxd5 9.dxc5 Bxc5 10.00 a6 11.Qxd7+ Qxd7 12.Nxd7 Kxd7 13.Nd2 Rhd8 14.Nb3 Rac8 15.Nxc5+ Rxc5 16.e4 Nf6 17.Be3 Rb5 18.Rfd1+ Ke8 19.Rxd8+ Kxd8 20.Bd4 Nxe4 21.Bxg7 Nd6 22.a4 Rf5 23.Bd4 b5 24.Bf1 Kd7 25.axb5 axb5 26.Be3 h5 27.f4 Be4 28.Ra2 Ke8 29.Kf2 Rd5 30.Be2 Bd3 31.Bf3 Be4 32.Be2 Bd3 ½½

Position after 27...Be4


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