By Mark Crowther

Gata Kamsky`s challenge for the FIDE World Championships at first faltered, and then died this week. The rot started with a second consecutive loss with the white pieces. In World Championship chess you must press for a win with White and hope to hold with Black, at least at the start of a match, if you start leaking losses with white then you really are in trouble.

Kamsky's whole problem has been overambition. Rustam Kamsky expressed the idea that his son would play a series of long games against Karpov to wear him out. This is a fine idea in theory but it presupposes that Gata Kamsky can play without error. Kamksy has been far too ambitious with the Black pieces and totally failed to see the turning points in games four and six (and they occurred early) when he had to concentrate on making the draw.

This over-zealousness and naivity has been his undoing. It is very much a reminder of Bobby Fischer in Curacao in 1962. He went there convinced that he was going to take the World Title after a wonderful performance in the Interzonal, but his play lacked any incisiveness and he tried just too hard to meet his own expectations. Kamsky is trying to win every game but just isn't playing well enough for that. One hopes too that he doesn't take this intrusion of reality as badly as Fischer, in personal terms I don't think he ever recovered from the ruthless lesson he was taught in Curacao. It is especially hard to take for those who are as monomaniacal as Kamsky.

Stylistically Kamsky needs to broaden, the whole Championship cycle has been a tough one and he hasn't played enough International Tournaments. But also its time for Rustam Kamsky to allow him to grow as a person, Gata Kamsky needs to make his own decisions from now on. Only very few people can live with controversy surrounding them in every event they play. Even those who can pay some sort of price.
Rustam Kamsky has batted very hard for his son, he should be the one who recognises the time to let go. Below is an interview with Rustam Kamsky, it is worth remembering that Gata Kamsky is 24 years old. I think that Rustam should remember that too ....

Karpov's performance, whilst not flawless has been ruthlessly effective. A man with a good feeling for matches he will surely take the opportunity to inflict further misery, especially with an eye to the rating points he can get from this match. He has calmly survived some dangerous play from Kamsky and taken an excellent reward from that.