Two grandmasters: Magnus Carlsen (r.) Wins a match against Jan Nepomnjaschtschi at the World Chess Championship in Dubai (Photo from December 1st, 2021)
Photo: GIUSEPPE CACACE / AFP
World champion Magnus Carlsen scored his first win against challenger Jan Nepomnjaschtschi at the World Chess Championship in Dubai in a record match and set the course for a successful title defense.
After five previous draws, the Norwegian won the sixth of a maximum of 14 duels and is now leading against the Russian with 3.5: 2.5.
The decision was made after midnight (local time), Nepomnyashchi resigned after 136 moves and almost eight hours of play.
Anatoly Karpow (Soviet Union) and Viktor Korchnoi (Switzerland) had the longest ever World Cup duel in 1978: The fifth meeting ended in a draw after 124 moves.
Carlsen and Nepomnyashchi went one better 43 years later.
After each match between the opponents Carlsen and Nepomnjaschtschi, both 31, the starting right changes.
Nepomnyashchi begins on Saturday (1.30 p.m. CET).
One point is awarded for a win and half a point for a draw.
Whoever reaches 7.5 points first is world champion.
Carlsen, who successfully defended his title in 2014, 2016 and 2018, has known his opponent since childhood.
Nepomnyashchi had prevailed against seven other top players in the candidates' tournament.
The world number five from Russia led before the World Cup in a direct comparison with industry leader Carlsen with 4: 1 wins in six draws.
jso / sid