Karpov lays claim to title of undisputed champion

ANATOLY KARPOV, the International Chess Federation's world champion, is certain to take first prize in the international tournament in Linares, Spain, ahead of his great rival Garry Kasparov.

With one round to be played, Karpov is a point and a half ahead of Kasparov and cannot be caught. It is the first tournament since 1981 in which Karpov has finished ahead of Kasparov, world champion in the eyes of the new Professional Chess Association.

The tournament attracted the 10 highest-ranked players in the world, and has been described as the strongest in the history of the game. Before play began, Kasparov said the winner would have every right to call himself the world tournament champion, a comment that he may now be regretting.

An incident during the event tarnished Kasparov's image. A video recording of his fifth-round game against Judit Polgar has been reported to confirm rumours that he illegally retracted a move after making a blunder. With both players short of time, Kasparov moved a knight to one square, then back to where it had come from, before changing direction to land on a different square. The question is whether his hand left the piece on the first square. If so, according to the rules, the move cannot be retracted.

Kramnik v Kasparov, page 11

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