Norway’s Magnus Carlsen missed the chance to establish an advantage in the men’s World Chess Championship final as he and the United States’ Fabiano Caruana drew a ninth-straight game in London today.
A rushed misstep from the 27-year-old defending champion gave his American opponent the chance to hold for a 58-move draw at The College in Holborn.
It means the best-of-12-games match remains all square at 4½-all.
"I felt like I had a comfortable advantage," Carlsen, sporting a bandage over a black eye from a collision with a Norwegian journalist during a game of football on yesterday’s rest day, was reported as saying by The Guardian.
"Then I just blew it.
"I was poor."
It marks the first time that a World Chess Championship match has started with nine successive draws.
The match is due to resume tomorrow with Caruana playing as white in game 10.
It offers a prize fund of €1 million (£891,000/$1.1 million), to be split 60-40 between winner and runner-up.
If the match is tied after 12 games, a succession of tie-break methods will be employed.
The first will be four rapid games - 25 minutes for each player - after which the player with the best score will be the winner.
If the match is still tied, the players will take part in up to five mini-matches of best-of-two blitz games - taking five minutes each.
The player with the best score in any two-game blitz match will be the winner.
If a winner is still to be found, the match will go to a single, sudden-death "Armageddon" game, with white being given five minutes and black four minutes.
In the case of a draw, the black will be declared the winner, with players drawing lots to have the right of choosing which colour they want.
The Women’s World Chess Championship final also continued today as home favourite Kateryna Lagno preserved her advantage after drawing the third game against China's Ju Wenjun at the Ugra Chess Academy in Russian town Khanty-Mansiysk.
The match score is now 2-1 in Lagno’s favour.
The final consists of four games with classical time control.
If the match is tied after that, a tie-break will ensue.
The fourth game is due to be played tomorrow with Lagno having the white pieces.