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The Independent Culture
Vladimir Kramnik is running away with the Melody Amber tournament in Monte Carlo having conceded only two draws in his first ten games. The format of the event is most unusual with each of the twelve players - all among the best in the world - plays two games against each of the others, the first at rapid-play rates and the second not only rapid, but without seeing the pieces.

For the blindfold games, the players execute their moves by blipping a mouse on the relevant squares of a chessboard on a computer screen. There has been a good crop of blunders , with several pieces thrown away by players forgetting the precise position.

In other games, however, the blindfold grandmasters have shown exceptionally clear sight of the board. In this one Black defended well against the first wave of White's attack, but the second wave, with h4, h5 and h6, seemed to catch him by surprise:

White: Joel Lautier

Black: Anatoly Karpov

1 d4 Nf6 18 Qh5 Qc7

2 c4 e6 19 Rc1 Bd7

3 Nf3 b6 20 Bd2 Bb5

4 a3 Bb7 21 Bc2 Be2

5 Nc3 d5 22 Rhe1 Bxf3

6 Qc2 dxc4 23 Qxf3 b5

7 e4 c5 24 h4 Re7

8 d5 exd5 25 Rxe7 Qxe7

9 exd5 Bd6 26 h5 Re8

10 Bg5 0-0 27 h6 gxh6

11 0-0-0 Nbd7 28 Re1 Qd8

12 Bxc4 Qb8 29 Rh1 b4

13 Kb1 a6 30 axb4 cxb4

14 Ne4 Nxe4 31 Rxh6 a5

15 Qxe4 Re8 32 Bxh7+ Nxh7

16 Qg4 Nf8 33 Qg4+ Kh8

17 Bd3 Bc8 34 Qf5 1-0