Draw Puts Karpov on Threshold of FIDE Title With AM-Indonesia-Chess-Moves
JAKARTA, Indonesia (AP) _ Former world champion Anatoly Karpov moved Thursday to within a half-point of claiming the disputed International Chess Federation crown, playing to a draw with Jan Timman.
The Russian, who was champion from 1975-85 before being dethroned by Garry Kasparov, can win the title with a draw Saturday in the 20th game of the FIDE chess federation’s championship match.
Timman of the Netherlands, playing white, offered the draw after his 43rd move and nearly five hours of play.
The draw, the third in a row following three consecutive Karpov victories, gave Karpov a 12-7 lead in the scheduled 24-game match. He needs 12 points to claim the disputed title and the equivalent of about $440,000 of the $705,000 purse.
The FIDE title was vacated when the chess body stripped Kasparov of it for refusing to play in the championship match with English grandmaster Nigel Short under its conditions. Kasparov, the world’s No. 1 player and champion for the last eight years, and Short formed the Professional Chess Association to contest the title, and Kasparov won handily.
Karpov, who was ranked No. 2 in the world behind Kasparov before FIDE also stripped Kasparov of his ranking, was eliminated from title contention in qualifying play before the chess federation selected him to play in the final.
Timman appeared clearly in control of Thursday’s game after 31 moves, with three passed pawns in the center of the board. But expert observers criticized his 35th move, pawn to e5, which allowed Karpov to exchange rooks.
″I think Timman was better from the beginning. But it was his own mistakes that led the game to a draw,″ said Indonesian grandmaster Herman Suryadiredja.