Chess.com keep tweeting about how combative this match is. 3 out of 5 games so far have been decisive, more than any other match in the last 10 years. Of course, us old timers remember Reykjavik 1972 when 4 out of the first 5 matches ended in wins, albeit not always with both players contributing.

If this match continues at the current pace then it will end with 60% of games being decisive. That will beat the 1972 match which finished with 10 out of 21 games ending in a win for one side or the other - 47.6%.

Of course, Carlsen - Caruana 2018 takes the prize for least combative with all 12 standard time control games ending peacefully.

Which world championship match (including pre-FIDE where results are known and including dual championships in 90's and early 2000's where a match was played) had the highest percentage of decisive games?

1 Answer 1


Of the official matches, the 1889 match between Steinitz and Chigorin appears to be the most combative, with only one draw in the 17th and final game. World Chess Championship 1889

Several of the prior, unofficial matches, had no draws.

Both match 2, and 6, which was not completed, of the series of matches between La Bourdonnais and McDonnell ended 4-5, with no draws. La Bourdonnais - McDonnell matches

Steinitz also had two earlier matches with no draws, against Anderssen in 1866 (8-6) and Blackburne in 1876 (7-0). World Chess Championship

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