Bonn:World Champion Viswanathan Anand took another step forward to retain the world crown by taking another draw with challenger Vladimir Kramnik of Russia in the 9th game of the world championship match now drawing to a close here.
Anand retained his 3-point lead following the draw with white pieces and is now just a draw away from retaining the crown he won last year in Mexico. The scoreline now stands at 6-3 in Anand favour in the 12-game match.
If one goes by the rules of the world championship, the match is as good as over unless Kramnik is able to win the last three remaining games, an almost impossible task possible only if disaster strikes Anand.
The 9th game also saw the Queen pawn opening by Anand for the fifth time in the match. It was a bloody battle as Kramnik decided to give Anand a taste of his own medicine the Semi-Slav's sharp Moscow system.
Anand was a little worse for some time according to the experts but played determinedly to steer the game to a draw.
For the records Anand did not enter the main complexities of the system and went for a relatively less-played system these days. Kramnik, obviously under pressure to win the game, came up with a new idea on the 11th move and got the desired results as Anand came under pressure as the game progressed.