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Peter Leko vs Vladimir Kramnik
Kramnik - Leko Classical World Championship Match (2004), Brissago SUI, rd 11, Oct-12
Queen's Indian Defense: Fianchetto. Nimzowitsch Variation Nimzowitsch Attack (E15)  ·  1/2-1/2



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Kibitzer's Corner
< Earlier Kibitzing  · PAGE 12 OF 12 ·  Later Kibitzing>
Oct-12-04  mack: <sponsors very rarely recoup momey from chess events even the wcc> Corus announced a massive turnover this past financial year; it is unclear of course how much of this can be put down to its long-term sponsorship of the Wijk Aan Zee tournament.
Oct-12-04  Dionyseus: I don't understand that at all, Patzer2. According to your logic, they should draw the game before playing any moves, there is afterall more games to be played yet, "and black would be happy with the draw."
Oct-12-04  azaris: <Arabic is a major 'lender' to Persian> That doesn't cut it. Chess was invented in India and from there it spread to Persia. Arabs learned it from the Persians. It would make no sense at all for Persians to borrow a phrase from Arabic to describe a situation in a game the Arabs weren't even familiar with yet!


The king is tired.

Oct-12-04  enigmaticcam: heh. According to, Queen's Indian leads to a 26.8% win for white, 19% win for black, and a 54.2% chance for draw! Maybe Kramnik and Leko both knew they were heading for a draw long before the game really began.
Oct-12-04  Andrew Chapman: Revising my previous post, 14..Qxc4 15.Ne5 Qc8 16.Nd5 seems to win the queen (or a piece) although after 16..exd5 17.Rxc8 Rxc8 18.Nf3 black does have a rook and a piece and a bad pawn for his queen.
Oct-12-04  Stonewaller2: <re: shah mat> I'm no Arabist, but I do recall seeing a lot of Iranians running around on TV once chanting "mat bar America." I took it that was Farsi for "death to America," rather than "America is powerless to escape." But maybe they were chanting in Arabic?

In the movie "Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade," when the bad guy goons are getting their heads cut off you can hear in the background someone shouting, "baidaq!" to call for the next victim; that means "foot soldier" or "chess pawn." Just thought I'd toss that out there since round 11 was such a short, bloodless draw. ;)

Premium Chessgames Member
  ray keene: there wasnt a serious world wide governing body in chess until 1948 when fide took control of the world championship-in labourdonnais day there were local chess associations , incipient national groups and important clubs. for example if the cafe de la regence in paris adopted some course or other it wd probably have influenced regional players to follow suit.thus in 1845 the yorkshire chess asscn. talked of the sceptre and the champion when referring to staunton. in my book which shd be available within a couple of weeks or so of match end i quote similar refs to labourdonnais and morphy. one source referred specifically to the world championship with ref to the victor of london 1851. steinitz also wrote that he regarded himself as champion from 1866-certainly in his column in the field 18 july 1874 steinitz was describing himself as the champion. lowenthal for example who was the chess establishment had already recognised him as such.

as for corus and chess sponsorship i strongly doubt that chess has earnt them anything-its more a matter of generating goodwill and prestige in holland.

Oct-12-04  Dillinger: <azaris> as far as I know, farsi word for dead is "morde" [mor-DAY], which is in line with the latin root mort also found in the semitic mat. the word for defeat is sekast and I find two words for tired: xaste and mande [man-DAY]. Finally, the words for helpless are nacar and nagozir. the article is interesting but it doesn't actually quote firsthand any farsi sources which translate "mat" as defeated, only a bunch of secondary sources. Equally, a bunch of secondary sources define it is as dead. It's hardly conclusive.
Oct-12-04  Dpm: If a strong GM wants a draw with white there is little that can stop him. Of course maybe Kramnik didn't have to iniate it himself... Ah well he got a big edge with white last time. Perhaps 1.Nf3!?
Oct-12-04  azaris: <Equally, a bunch of secondary sources define it is as dead. It's hardly conclusive.> Irrelevant. My sources explain the faulty etymology from Arabic. Therefore we can discount all of the sources that rely on that faulty etymology. Unless you can find a source that specifically claims that 'mat' in ancient Farsi translates to 'dead', I'm convinced the etymology is wrong in most places.
Premium Chessgames Member
  Eggman: This, to me, was a legitimate draw. It was not a premature conclusion. Still disappointing, but legitimate nonetheless.
Oct-12-04  ruylopez900: 3 games left! Should be exciting as Kramnik can't wait any longer with these QID, he's gonna have to attack Leko as hard as he can, a KID or Gruenfeld maybe. Kramnik does have an advantage of two whites though, so Leko will have to hold strong. Good Luck to both.
Premium Chessgames Member
  Annie K.: <Azaris: <Chess was invented in India and from there it spread to Persia. Arabs learned it from the Persians. It would make no sense at all for Persians to borrow a phrase from Arabic to describe a situation in a game the Arabs weren't even familiar with yet!>>

First, do we have evidence that the original word used for mate was "mat"? Perhaps the Indians and the Persians used some other phrase, the Arabs used their own ("mat") and the game just passed on from them with that term to the rest of the world.

Second, chess may be the central theme in the world for some of us, ;) but I rather suspect people used to die even before chess was invented, and I also think it very probable that the Arabs had their own word for this phenomenon long before the Persians taught them to play chess. ;) So I don't quite see why you want to connect the etymology for the word "dead" in Arabic to chess, and who invented it.

And lastly, it does too make sense to borrow a foreign word to use as game terminology, so it's not even very unlikely that the Persians *did* borrow the Arab term (them being neighbors, and thus convenient to borrow from), regardless of whether their contemporary Arabs played chess or not. :)

<Back on topic,> I just have an impression that Leko doesn't mind drawing with White because he actually seems to prefer playing Black? Just a feeling...

Oct-12-04  dragon40: Hey everyone...
I was upset at not having been able to go through this "game" with my fellow kibitzers here at, but I just got on and looked and thought WHAT GAME? Well, its good for Leko, since hes in lead and Kramnik has displayed no desire to try and beat him with the black pieses..probably going to try harder with the White pieces which means 22 moves instead of 20 before he offers a draw:) I wonder if Kramnik will actually play 1. d4 or if he will stick with the 1.e4 which has served him so efectively in this match thus far (yes, that is sarcasm) :) Hopefully, we will have answers on the 12th game!
Take care all....
Oct-12-04  Stonewaller2: <it does too make sense to borrow a foreign word to use as game terminology> For instance, the Spanish "alfil," Bishop (or nail, by allusion to the chess piece's pointed shape), from Arabic "al-fil," elephant; or Rook from Arabic "al-rukhkh," chariot? Makes sense to me. ;)
Oct-12-04  who: <> I understand that there is a glitch in the system which doesn't allow you to sort the games by chronological order. Could you perhaps put the number of the game into the title (Kramnik-Leko World Championship Match 2004 round 11)?
Oct-12-04  Dillinger: <but I rather suspect people used to die even before chess was invented> LOL. I rather suspect they lived more interesting lives too.
Oct-12-04  iron maiden: Turns out I didn't miss much today. If I was a tournament organizer, and they drew before the first time limit, I'd at least make them play blitz for an hour or so.
Oct-12-04  pawn52: <iron maiden> Looks like it was a draw by repetition. They may have had a good reason to draw early because of the repetiveness.
Oct-12-04  patzer2: <Dionyseus> I'm referring to the final repetition of moves being "best play" for both sides. Either side could have continued, but in doing so they would have accepted a position (in their 2700+ rated opinions) less favorable than the repetion. That's not the same as not playing any moves, which was not an option.

It's also not the outcome I would have hoped for either. However, it is a perfectly legitimate reason for a draw at this level of play.

Oct-12-04  excmo:
Oct-12-04  Shah Mat: hmm. i think that either interpretation ie: king is DEAD or King is Mated/trapped/ambushed/thwarted is entirely accurate. in fact, we anticipate the king's demise when we know that we have lost the game by resigning, by symbolically tilting the king on his side. We acknowledge that if the king isn't DEAD, he will be soon. This tension of inevitability is what makes the term 'mate' so unique...but we can liken it to a modern idiom as well. Imagine a video game, for example, Counterstrike, where a player is about to get killed: you say "oh, he's dead". He's not dead yet, but he will be soon. You could also say the unfortunate fellow has been mated. Mate doesn't mean death directly, but gestures towards the imminent fact of death. So both terms are entirely accurate, and i think it's unfair to reject either of them out of hand.
Dec-21-04  Stonewaller2: The Orientalist HGF Murray in his "Short History of Chess" states "mat" in Persian meant "has no recourse, fails, is defeated." Sorry for the delay in checking references.
Nov-10-05  trolls: We are all priveleged to have Ray
Keene also counseling without pretension here, so I hope everybody appreciates this. Certainly there are
many GMs who won't give the newbie
the time of day.
Jul-03-08  Abejorral: Draw masters produce crap like this
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