Hello everyone and welcome to the live coverage of the 2018 World Chess Championship match between the reigning champion Magnus Carlsen (Norway) and the challenger Fabiano Caruana (USA). In this live blog + live games from WCC 2018 we will be covering the event Carlsen – Caruana with the latest news, developments, interviews, and in-game details.
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Current move eval: Move 49: Lc0 +0.00 , SF +0.00
Officially the game ends in a draw. A successful feat for Caruana with black, where he could have had chances for more than 1/2 points with another inaccuracy by Carlsen at some point. The official comment of Carlsen after the game, “I am not happy about this game, but it is better than losing”
The position is absolutely equal, but we still have to see some moves as players cannot agree to a draw before move 30. A possible line 23. .. Bc6 24. Qd6 Qxd6 25. exd6 Bxf3 26. gxf3 Kf8 27. c4 Ke8 28. c5 Kd7 29. Rc1 Rc8 30. Rb1 Rxc5 31. Rxb7+ Kxd6 32. Rxa7 Rc7 33. Ra6+ Ke7 34. Kf1 Rc3 35. Rb6 Ra3 36. a6 Kf6 37. f4 Kf5 38. Rb7 Rxa6 39. Rxf7+ Kg6 40. Rf8 Ra4 41. Kg2 Rb4 42. Kf3 Rb3+ 43. Kg2 Rb2 44. Kf3 Ra2 45. Kg2 Rd2 46. Kg3 Rd5 47. Ra8 Rd3+ 48. Kg2 Rd2 49. Kf3 Kf7 50. Ra6 Rd3+ 51. Kg2 Rc3 52. h4 Kf6 53. Ra5 Rd3 54. Ra8 Rd5 55. Kf3 g6 56. Rf8+ Ke7 57. Ra8 Rh5 58. Ra7+ Kf6 59. Kg3
The indication by the engines is clear. It is still more difficult to play this game with white, but objectively this is a draw
Now a dramatic line is needed for Carlsen to keep equality 17. Nxf7 Kxf7 18. Bh5+ Kg8 19. Bxd6 Rxd6
The neural network based on Alpha Zero, Lc0, now also goes negative with -0.07 at move 16. Best Lc0 line is 16. cxd5 Nxd5 17. Nxf7 Kxf7 18. Bh5+ Kg8 19. Bxd6 Rxd6 20. e4 Bd7 21. exd5 Rxd5 22. Rxd5 exd5 23. Bf3 Bxa4 24. Qa2 Rd8 25. h3 Kh8 26. Ra1 b5 27. Rc1 Qc7 28. Bxd5 a5 29. Bf3 Rc8 30. Bg4 Qc4 31. Qa3 Re8 32. Bh5 Rc8 33. Bg4 Re8 34. Bh5 Rc8 35. Bg4 , secondary suggestion 16. Bh5 Bxe5 17. Bxe5 Bd7 18. cxd5 Nxd5 19. Qe4 Nxc3 20. Bxc3 Qxh5 21. Qxb7 Bxa4 22. Rxd8+ Rxd8 23. Qxa7 Bb5 24. Re1 Rd1 25. f3 Rxe1+ 26. Bxe1 Qd5 27. Qd4 Qxd4 28. exd4 Ba4
First negative eval appears after Carlsen’s 15th move (-0.03), now 15. .. Bd6 16. cxd5 Nxd5 17. Nxf7 Kxf7 18. Bxd6 Rxd6 19. Bh5+ Kg8 20. e4 Ne7 21. Rxd6 Qxh5 22. Qd3 Nc6 23. Qc4 Qe5 24. Rfd1 Qf4 25. g3 Qf3 26. R6d3 Qh5 27. f4 Qg4 28. Rd6 Kh7 29. Qd3 Qh5 30. Qc4 Na5 31. Qb5 Qxb5 32. axb5 Nc4 33. R6d4 is the suggested line by SF  Caruana finds it immediately, he must still be in his preparation!
At move 14: Lc0 +0.38 , SF +0.21 , Caruana with a very successful opening, Magnus must be disappointed. Adding to that the advantage of the clock, it is a good start for the American player
After deep think Carlsen goes for the second line of Lc0 mentioned below. Caruana comes with immediate reply as per the given line.
The experience by the neural network Lc0 shows that it is much easier to play this game in further positions. The suggested deep line is 11. Nd2 Bf8 12. Be2 Qc5 13. O-O h6 14. Bg3 Qe7 15. h3 Bd7 16. b4 Be8 17. c5 a5 18. Qb2 axb4 19. axb4 e5 20. Rfe1 Qe6 21. Nf3 d4 22. exd4 exd4 23. Nb5 Ra2 24. Qb1 Rxe2 25. Nc7 Rxe1+
Stockfish running on 128 cores agrees with 11. Nd2, but diverges immediately as black 11. Nd2 dxc4 12. Nxc4 Rxd1+ 13. Qxd1 Qd8 14. Qxd8+ Nxd8 15. Be2 Be7 16. O-O Nd5 17. Nxd5 exd5 18. Nd6 Bd7 19. Bf3 Bc6 20. Be5 Bxd6 21. Bxd6 Ne6 22. Bg4 Rd8 23. Be5 Kf8 24. Rd1 Ke7 25. b4 Ba4 26. Rc1 g6 27. f4 d4 28. Bxe6 Kxe6 29. Bxd4 Kd7 30. Bxa7 Rc8 31. Rxc8 Kxc8 32. Kf2 Kd7 33. g4 Kc6 34. g5 Kb5 35. Kg3 Kc4 36. f5 Kb3 37. Bc5 Kxa3 38. fxg6
As it is a general rule not to move the same piece in the opening, one might think Be2 is a good move. And indeed it is as this is the second choice by Lc0. However, the evaluation there is only +0.33 (rather than +0.87) 11. Be2 Ne4 12. cxd5 Nxc3 13. bxc3 exd5 14. O-O h6 15. a4 Bd6 16. Bxd6 Rxd6 17. c4 Be6 18. cxd5 Rxd5 19. Rxd5 Qxd5
After nine moves in a very typical continuation and long theory ahead, even though computers are showing some advantage for white, statistics show that this is not at all a bad opening for black from historical plan.
1. d4 by Carlsen today followed by …Nf6 2. Nf3 d5 3. c4 e6 4. Nc3 Be7 Another interesting energetic try could have been …c5 here, but there is a lot of theory ahead and we are yet to see what the players have prepared.
Carlsen and Caruana are at the board. Carlsen is in light colored suit, Caruana in a dark one. The battle of colors and minds is about to start
The day in Tata Steel Chess India 2018 – 2019 has just ended. Levon Aronian (ARM) and Hikaru Nakamura (USA) lead with 4,5/6, a full point ahead of competition.
1h and 15 minutes to the start of the game. The engines are set and running, it is time for a show.
The Sicilian Rossolimo was on the board yesterday. That will certainly be seen in later games where Caruana is white again, often World Chess Championships turn in theoretical battles. Today’s opening choice will set yet another trend. Who will be better prepared, we will know in just 1h and 45 minutes.
Two hours are left to the start of the game. Yesterday’s drama in the first half of the Caruana – Carlsen game 1 has left many questions to be answered today. Stockfish, running on a Super Computer of 128 cores, often reached evals of over +7.5 for Carlsen before move 40 and with the time running this eval was increasing even more. Clearly, that would have been a victory in any other circumstance, but the psychological pressure of a first game in a World Chess Championship took its toll and Magnus could not close the game.
Can Carlsen utilize effectively the white’s advantage today or will Caruana stabilize his play? In a match of only 12 games every single one is of high importance.
What do experts think, check out our day 1 live blog