Magnus Carlsen, world chess champion
Magnus Carlsen, at age 31, has been proclaimed world chess champion, after getting the final point this Friday against his rival, the Russian player Yan Nepómniaschi, of the same age, in what has meant the Norwegian's fourth victory in Dubai where the final of the specialty was held. Four wins and seven draws for the defending champion.
Carlsen is the number one in the ranking since January 2010 (He has been in absolute dominance over the boards for almost 12 years) and the world champion since November 2013. Nobody of his generation can beat him (Karjakin, Caruana, Nepo, they have all fallen). Hopes are pinned on Alireza Firouzja, 18, Iranian nationalized French this year, who has a meteoric progression and has placed 2 in the ranking, so the duel between these two teachers is already eagerly awaited.
In fact, Nepo resisted Carlsen with successive draws until the sixth duel between the two arrived, last Friday, when the Norwegian player in eight hours won the longest game in the history of the World Chess Championship. From there, the Russian player went into crisis to lose first after a huge error that surprised Carlsen, believing that since failure was impossible, it was a Nepo strategy until he understood that it was a incomprehensible failure. And this Friday the decisive game has arrived and there is already a new champion, who does not change, and the dominance continues.
Nepo only lived up to the start of the tournament and leaves without having released his locker. In the last game held this Friday the applicant has delivered in a confrontation between the two full of inaccuraciesPerhaps the nerves of Carlsen knowing that if he achieved victory he would win the title again. But it has been, above all, the Russian player who has made the most mistakes to end up losing.
Thus, the last game, started with an Italian defense for the first time in the match, ran evenly until midgame, when the Russian, perhaps desperately, attempted a wrong break. The champion struck then, although he did not choose the best line and had no choice but to prolong the duel until he won a simple ending of queen against rook and majority of pawns. The carlsen technique, again, it was decisive.
"We have both made many mistakes, but Nepo always made the last one and I have taken advantage of it," says Carlsen
Nepómniaschi, who was declared a contender after beating the Candidates Tournament against the odds ahead of Vachier-Lagrave, Giri and Caruana, has shown a disappointing game. More than the genius of Carlsen, whose greatest example was the refined final of the marathon sixth game, the Russian only confirmed his level in the first part of the World Cup. After his first defeat he collapsed and played a game well below his means. Carlsen, on the other hand, kept the cold blood that has made him famous.
The final 4-0 (plus seven draws) is the largest result in a world championship for exactly a century, in 1921, when the Cuban José Raúl Capablanca endorsed the same result to the German Emmanuel Lasker.
"Do you think you'll ever be able to put this down?" Carlsen was asked at the postgame press conference. "I think I can't answer that for now," he concluded mysteriously. "We both made a lot of mistakes, but Nepo always made the last one and I have taken advantage of it ".