The Norwegian champion has no intention of competing for the next world title … unless his rival is the teenager.
The world chess crown may remain vacant if the current depositary, Magnus carlsen, carries out its veiled purpose of not defend the title again if whoever sits on the other side of the board is someone other than Iran Alireza Firouzja, which in 2021 has been erected, with 18 years, in the new sensation of the sport of the 64 squares.
The world chess media were shocked by this comment from the Norwegian: “For those who expect me to play the World Championship next time, the possibility of them being disappointed is very great“, released during an interview conducted by his friend -and namesake- Magnus barstad in the podcast of Loperekka.
“This should be the last”
“It has been clear to me most of the year that this World Championship should be the last. It doesn’t mean as much as it used to. I have not felt that the positive outweighs the negative, “explained the champion.
The experience of Dubai, where I crushed the Russian aspirant Ian Nepomniachtchi After the marathon sixth game (the longest in history in a World Cup: 136 movements and almost 8 hours of play) it was not, however, gratifying for Carlsen despite the conclusive final score (7.5 to 3.5) which made the last three scheduled games unnecessary.
Far from fueling his ambition to break new records of possession of the crown (the record is held by Emmanuel Lasker with 6 World Cups), win for the fifth time an encounter with the world title at stake seems to have deactivated the Norwegian, who now directs his arrows at a numerical target: become the first player in history to exceed 2,900 Elo points.
Carlsen already has the best score in history (2,882, in May 2014, repeated in August 2019), but 2,900 are far behind, even for him. “It doesn’t seem completely impossible, but I know I have to be on top of my game every time I compete. There is no margin of error, “he acknowledges.
Once dispatched Nepo, the chess monarch now allows himself to point a finger at his opponent. Write the name of Firouzja, that compete under the French flag, It could be a new genius of the Norwegian, which in this way puts a huge pressure on whom almost everyone points to as future world champion. Killing the young suitor before leaving the crown seems to be Carlsen’s only goad. In the age of unbeatable computers, classical chess against elite players is finding it increasingly boring.
Too many tables
The table reiteration in magisterial practice it is an increasingly pronounced trend. Any Great master with an Elo rating higher than 2,700 points, he is able to replicate the world champion if he has spent enough time training with the help of the modules and can remember the lines suggested by the silicon brain.
The previous “match” for the title, against the American Fabiano Caruana, then world No. 2, yielded a disappointing balance of 12 tables in as many games at a classic pace. The contest was only decided in the quick tiebreak games, in which Carlsen inflicted harsh punishment on his rival (3-0).
The world champion suggests change the pace of play in the World Cups, reducing the time available for each player, which is now 2 hours for the first 40 plays, one more hour for the next 20 and 15 more minutes until the end of the game, but the International Federation (FIDE) has not ruled about the proposal. In chess, the person who makes the last mistake wins, and with less time available, mistakes and inaccuracies multiply.
Now everyone looks at Firouzja, a player who just beat the record of earliness in reaching 2,800 points Elo (18 years and 5 months, compared to 18 and 11 months for Carlsen himself). The Iranian prodigy started the year in 18th place in the rankings and has climbed to second place (2,804) in an impressive progression that seems to have awakened the predatory instinct of the world champion.
But the title contender’s selection system is an obstacle course even for the world’s No. 2. Alireza will have to face seven others Great teachers, almost all installed in the world top-10, in a two-lap free-for-all melee whose winner automatically becomes the official challenger of the world champion.
Still without much experience in combat, the young Iran faces the double pressure of facing great monsters on the board and knowing that he is being scrutinized by the world champion, ready to clip the wings of the suitor before abandoning his crown.
Reference from elmundo