Game 10 started off well for Anand. He had a very easy draw in Game 9, and then Carlsen chose to play the Grunfeld again, reaching a double-edged middlegame position where Anand had the initiative and slightly more pleasant prospects. However, he elected not to play the critical continuation 16. d6!? and subsequently reached a position where Black’s piece play balanced the two bishops and passed d-pawn. We will only know in the future why Anand hesitated at the critical junctures in this match – if he chooses to publish a book on the match, or is candid in a future interview.

It is down to the final mini-match starting from tonight. Carlsen has a chance to put it away tonight if he wins. Anand will have to survive the 11th game in order to have one final shot with the White pieces to equalize and drag the match to play-offs. Theoretically, Anand can win tonight as well – he had won with Black in the final game of the 2010 match against Topalov – but that is not realistic given the previous games of this current match. It would be to Carlsen’s advantage to stretch out the game even if he has no advantage. He is younger and fitter, and tiring out Anand can only be to his benefit in defending the Black pieces tomorrow.

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